Botswana’s preparations for its maiden appearance at the Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON)was given a major boost after the Debswana Orapa, Damtshaa and Letlhakane Mines offered to host one of the women’s national football team’s training camps.
The offer by Botswana’s leading diamond mine comes a few weeks after Botswana Football Association (BFA) President Maclean Letshwiti issued a clarion call for the business community to aid the Mares as they prepare for their first AWCON appearance.
“This qualification is a historic achievement which we will strive to execute well during preparations and at the competition itself. I urge the business community to see the incentive to play a part in this form of women empowerment,” Letshwiti said a few weeks back.
He revealed that the Mares needed about P7, 2 million to finance their preparations and participation at the women’s continental showpiece. Debswana Orapa, Letlhakane and Damtshaa Mine heeded the call, offering to host one of the team’s local training camps as it prepares for the AWCON, which is slated for Morocco from 2nd to 23rd July. Debswana’s gesture was lauded by BFA spokesperson Tumo Mpatane, who urged other corporates to also come on board.
“This noble gesture by Debswana comes at a critical time when the team requires intensive training and resources for its preparations. Preparation camps are important because they help ready the team for the final competition,” said Mpatane.
The Mates are part of 12 women’s national teams that will be competing in the tournament, which also doubles as the African qualifiers to the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, which will be jointly hosted by Australia and New Zealand. The top four teams from Morocco will automatically qualify for the World Cup while two more will advance to the inter-confederation play-offs.