Solomon Islands’ Western Province makes the leap into women’s football

The WFA/SIFF Women's Football Regional Development Centre launch. Credit: SIFF Media
The WFA/SIFF Women's Football Regional Development Centre launch. Credit: SIFF Media

The Western Football Association (WFA) in the Solomon Islands has embarked on a historic journey as it became the first provincial football association of the Solomon Islands Football Federation (SIFF) to launch a Women’s Football Regional Development Centre.

The launch took place on Wednesday 9th September 2020 at the JF Kennedy Stadium in Gizo, with WFA Football Development Officer, Seri Hite, noting it as milestone for the province and football in general in the Solomon Islands.

“It is a very important milestone for WFA as this is the launch of women’s football here in the Western Province,” Hite said.

“The event was witnessed by the Western Province Premier, WFA President and executive, SIFF officials and more than 200 women, girls and students from participating schools in the central region of the Western Province.

“This development centre is part of the WFA and SIFF long-term strategic plans to develop women’s football.”

Hite said the launch also marked the beginning of a partnership between the two football bodies, WFA and SIFF, and the Western Provincial Government.”

While the exact location for the regional development centre is yet to be decided on, what has begun as a pilot project, is expected to expand into further provincial centres across the country .

Players take part in a mini-tournament as part of the Women’s Football Regional Development Centre launch in Gizo, Western Province. Credit: SIFF Media

To help mark the launch of the Women’s Football Regional Development Centre, a mini-tournament was organised for schools and women’s teams at the JF Kennedy Stadium.

“Every team came from secondary schools in the central region of the Western Province, and we have nine teams participating today” Hite explained.

“Our Member Associations are zoned, so we are looking to work initially with two to three zones to start a women’s league, then we will look at other zones.”

In addition to the development centre, SIFF recently held a coaching course in Gizo with Frank Kiko Hong one of the participants who is now hoping to put his new skills to use.

“For women’s football in Western Province I think this launch is giving a lot of messages to our women and girls,” the WFA Development Officer said.

WFA Development Officer, Frank Kiko Hong. Credit: SIFF Media

“It’s a big opportunity for our women to come to listen and see what is going on in regards to football. I think this will boost the morale of our women and girls, and we will see a big number of participants.

“This is the start of the development of women’s football in the Western Province and we hope our women and girls will participate well and we’re looking forward to further programmes in regards to women’s football in our province.”

Reporting via Solomon Islands Football Federation

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