PHILADELPHIA-SINT MAARTEN - The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Association_Football (CONCACAF) hosted a top-level conference seminar focusing on development in women’s football on October 25 and 26, 2014, in Philadelphia, coinciding with the semifinals and final of the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship.
The Sint Maarten Soccer Association, the national body for football on Sint Maarten, sent Ms. Danaë Daal to represent Sint Maarten at this two-day event. Ms. Daal has been the key figure in developing the sport for females on Sint Maarten, by establishing the first women’s soccer association on Sint Maarten and continues to develop female football with a team of other female football aficionados so that more girls and women can continue to enjoy the beautiful game.
The two day event had three main goals: education of stakeholders about the current status of women in football in the region and around the world; promoting the various opportunities which women’s football offers; and inspiring stakeholders to continue to invest in and improve the women’s game. 39 of 41 member associations of CONCACAF attended to discuss the issues and opportunities surrounding women’s football development.
On Saturday 25 October the seminar included topics like elite player football, football pathways, hosting the FIFA’s women’s world cup and many other topics that were discussed by representatives from all over the world. On Sunday the program followed with a workshop with the member associations and discussions were held on the challenges they face pertaining to female football and how we can learn from each other.
The main conclusion of this event is that more focus should be on development and tools were given on how to achieve this. This was also stressed by the president of CONCACAF. “The priority for all our Member Associations should be development,” said CONCACAF President Jeffry Webb. “
The Oualichi Women’s Soccer Association has been a member of the Sint Maarten Soccer Association since 2013 and is also a member of CONCACAF. The participation by Ms. Daal at the seminar “Let’s Develop Women’s Football” marks a positive development for female football on Sint Maarten which would not have been possible without the support of the president of the Sint Maarten Soccer Association, Mr. Nicky Owen. “This is a dream come true for me by not only be amongst many who share the same vision for female football development but also as a player to see many of my idols like Abby Wambach, Sydney Leroux and Hope Solo play on the field,” commented Daal.
The seminar closed with the attendance of all member associations at the semifinal and final of the 2014 CONCACAF Women’s Championship. Trinidad and Tobago was defeated by Mexico with a 4-2 score leaving the team with a last opportunity for a spot at the Women’s World Cup in Canada next year if they defeat Ecuador. The finals were won by the US team by a victorious 6-0 win on Costa Rica. Both countries have secured their spot for the World Cup. Twenty-one finalists are confirmed for the Women’s World Cup, including four teams from CONCACAF.
For more information of Sint Maarten participation in Philadelphia visit the Oualichi Women’s Soccer Team Facebook page or their website: www.oualichisoccer.com. (Qualichi Women’s Soccer Team)