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Kick4Life FC: Helping save the lives of victims of gender-based violence

June 30, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Puky Ramokoatsi believes football helped saved her life.

One of these programs is the Girls United initiative, which supports vulnerable girls and women facing gender-based violence, using football as a means to engage and empower them.

In the 10 years since Ramokoatsi joined the charity, she has gone on to become the head coach of Kick4Life FC women's team.

Last week, Kick4Life FC said from next season it will become the first top-flight team in the world to give its men's and women's sides equal budgets.

Kick4Life FC's men's team won promotion to Lesotho's top division in 2014, while the women were founding members of the Lesotho Super League and in 2018, with Ramokoatsi at the helm, secured the club's first major trophy by winning the Women's Super League Cup.

"We've seen that women's team be incredibly powerful as role models and a lot of the players are involved in running Girls United," Kick4Life co-founder Steve Fleming tells CNN.

Fleming says Kick4Life also runs educational programs for men to try and change "archaic" attitudes towards women in society.

Ramokoatsi was part of a small group of players that founded Kick4Life FC's women's team in 2010.

"There's never gonna be an easy time to make that transition, but seeing this increase of gender-based violence, we felt this is the right time to commit to it and say: 'As a football club, we're going to create a level playing field for women on the pitch. '

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