The Zimbabwe Open University Staff Sports (ZUSSA) chairperson, Mrs Portia Mazhindu, was among the group of sports leaders who attended the Women-in-Sport conference held at Jameson Hotel in Harare rcently.
The conference ran under the theme “Let them lead and tell their story”.
Speaking during the conference, Regional Anti-Doping Organisations (RADO) education officer, Mr Steve Mudawarima, highlighted that doping was a dangerous issue in sport in relation to female sexual reproductive health. Doping is the use of banned athletic performance-enhancing drugs by athletic competitors. He said: “Vulnerable girls need safety places, they need to be provided information on sexual and reproductive health and they also need support from the family and spouses so that they fulfil their dreams”. He added that in all instances, doping has to be avoided.
Zimbabwe has a long history of women who have been successful in sport. It is because of women’s involvement in sport as athletes, coaches, administrators, sport medicine practitioners, match officials and journalists that Zimbabwe has become known around the globe.
The conference also called upon the media to give balanced coverage to female sportspersons. Interest of the media tends to be event-based or prior to major tournaments with little or no coverage of local leagues or regular build-up. In most occasions, after an event or tournament, there tends to be no interest in covering women’s sporting disciplines as opposed to what happens to men. There are no stories on women’s sport after a tournament.