So, my favourite moment of the trip so far… just so happened to be on the side of a road on route to our next destination, Muranga. After heckling our driver, David, to stop the bus and reverse back down a busy main road followed swiftly by a three-point turn, (which would definitely get you a few majors on a British driving test) we finally stopped off of at the equator. Teamed with a bat and ball, it was time for a cricket match spanning both hemispheres, bowler in the Southern and batter in the Northern. Soon it became quite a spectacle for the locals, generating a rather sizeable crowd of men who were keen to see what was going on.
This became the perfect opportunity to continue our work around gender equality, with all of our female coaches taking over the helm to participate in the session and our resident ex-England international showcasing her batting skills. The all-female affair seemed to start to attract some women out of their shops, hoping to see and understand exactly what it was that these crazy muzungu women were doing!
It was the perfect opportunity, in front of a crowd of men and on the side of a busy road, to put these women on a platform and empower them to take hold of the bat and do something they probably never thought they would or could do! A little persuasion was required but the first woman stepped up to the crease. After a few practice shots, she hit the ball right out of the Northern Hemisphere into the Southern and the beaming smile on her face is something I will never forget. Although, I will potentially have to forget her asking Zoe if she had just played table tennis… hopefully she’ll remember cricket from now on!
Soon we had women queuing up for a go and number two certainly did not hold back. When I say she whacked it… no shop/tree/car was safe. It was such a powerful moment, to see this strong woman demonstrating how she was not only capable of playing the sport but she certainly would have put most cricketers to shame with the power behind her shot. It just goes to show what these women and girls are capable of if given the opportunity and empowerment to do so.
It’s International Women’s Day on 8th March, so watch this space and social media for more on the above and gender inclusivity from our Kenya trip.