Afghan national women's football team honoured for bravery over discrimination and sexual abuse campaign
The Afghan women's football team have received a global award for their campaign to denounce discrimination and abuse of players.
They set up the campaign #voice4voiceless to denounce the mistreatment, discrimination and sexual abuse suffered by some players at the hands of members of the Afghan Football Federation (AFF).
AFF President Keramuddin Keram was suspended as a result of the campaign as well as four other members of the AFF for violating FIFA's code of ethics.
The World Football Summit and Women in Football came together to award the team the WFS Industry Award for Best Women's Football Initiative.
The Afghan Women's team will be celebrated for their bravery at the awards ceremony in Madrid on September 24.
Kelly Lindsey, coach of the Afghanistan national women's team, said: "It's truly an honour for the players of the Afghanistan nation women's team to be recognised for their bravery to stand up and bring a voice for the voiceless.
“When they publicly stood up for their human rights and spoke about the discrimination and sexual abuse they suffered, they sparked an international dialogue about the impact of football as an agent for social change and gender equality.
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"It hasn’t been easy, many of them took significant personal risk, and have put their families at risk, in the process of doing so. But as a result, they’ve truly become messengers of hope for future generations. Men and women around the world are starting to speak about the abuse they have faced."
She went on to acknowledge the impact these 'inspirational women' have had, saying: "These women have started a movement, where people globally are having conversations about how to make transformational change together. Their strength and bravery have united individuals and organisations to dialogue and work towards a better future for all."