As a young girl who grew up under magnanimous care and freedom, Bizuhan Endale enjoyed having her family around. She cherished the time she had with them and the warmth they gave her, until she reached a point where she came head to head with societal values and accepted norms.
Bizuhan was not your typical girl. Her heart was in another place; she was made to run off with the boys in her neighborhood, to the football fields with the boys in her neighborhood and play all day long. Soon she was to be immersed in her football obsession, a game that is believed to have driven millions crazy. She was smacked in the head, pinched, and scolded many times for her love of the game but never once thought about quitting, which created a serious dispute with her parents.
Thanks to my older brother who supported me, after the sudden death of my father, my mom started to see and then accepted my passion for soccer,â€ she says.
Cutting your hair in a short, matuta style, wearing fashionably shredded pants, and looking like a body builder is what has been long thought revealing of sportswomen, particularly that of women footballers in Ethiopia. For deviating from what is considered to be normal behavior for young girls in Ethiopia, women football players face social problems in their day-to-day lives. Men, elder members of society, and parents in all social strata were vehemently disrespectful to young women footballers for various reasons. Traditional thinking, lack of awareness and poor sporting facilities remain the most critical challenges to women football players in Ethiopia. These factors impacted the sport for years, to some extent this very sport remains one of the classical sectors where gender inequality is stifled in the country.
Read more at: The Reporter