Unbeknownst to most Mzuzuites, there is a booming Women’s Football League in Mzuzu and the surrounding areas. When we arrived in Malawi last February I was surprised to find organized soccer for girls in the northern region of Malawi. Mzuzu has 15 teams that compete in the league. Most of the teams belong to secondary schools (high schools) but a few are club teams. I met with Tamala Banda, one of five female referees in the country, about coaching. She helped search out a young and dedicated team for me to work with. Before I knew it I was out on the ground (field) at the prison coaching Prison United. The name is a bit misleading, as none of my girls are prisoners, but girls from 14-22 years old who come from different secondary schools around Masasa neighborhood.
Monica is the younger sister of Jenny and Marita who play for our team. She is always at our trainings, usually helping as ball girl. I absolutely love this hair-style...it's like she stuck her finger in a socket. Actually, the greatest is seeing grown women walking around town, doing business with their hair styled just like this!!
Tamala is certified to referee both men's and women's football in Malawi. She is awaiting results for her FIFA certification which would qualify here to referee international tournaments abroad.