Posted on March 18, 2012

The 5th School Olympic Program held under the theme “Family and Sports” saw a very successful football competition on Thursday at Aspire Zone (pictured).

Al Bayan elementary school prevailed 2-0 over Qatar Elementary School while, Al Rifaa elementary school beat Noor Al Maaref 1-0. In basketball Zekreet School had comprehensive wins for in all their matches.

The games were covered for the first time by international news agencies, as part of an initiative to support female sports in the State of Qatar.

Al Anood Al Shammari, Football trainer in Al Bayan School said: “I noticed how girls have improved year after year. Parents are encouraging their girls to play football. We have increased the number of our team since girls are interacting very positively and willing to practice this game”.

Jawaher Al Hajri, one of Al Anood star players, said: “I chose football because it makes me run fast. We won most of the games and we are very proud of our school”.

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Sawsan Youssef Al Abdullah, PE teacher in Al Bayan Elementary School said: “We play football, basketball, handball and volleyball in our schools. We have noticed the students improving through the years and willing to compete and win.  We ensure to make up any lesson or class the students miss when they go to play matches with other schools.”

“I believe School Olympic Program is a pioneering initiative and reflects the significance of sports among all age groups in the country. We do live in a conservative society but this doesn’t prevent girls from playing sports as long as they respect wardrobe customs,” she said.

Al Bayan Elementary School student Mariam Al Mahmoud said: “I am a big fan of basketball and my school has given me the opportunity to interact with students from other schools and meet new people. The program is very diverse and includes many types of sports. I believe sport stimulates the mind and help students to make impressive achievements at school”.

Hanan Al Sulaiti, a PE Teacher at Al Rifaa School noted: “SOP has been very impressive and allowed the girls to benefit regardless of win or loss. The real win is to practice sport within a healthy environment that enhances competition and long-lasting friendships”.

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