Meet a Game-Changer: Fatuma Ramadham 

Fatuma Ramadham’s path to playing soccer was paved by her mother, a former footballer herself and single mom. Growing up, Fatuma witnessed her mother’s passion for the game and the struggles she faced as a female player.  

“As a woman, she had to juggle her football career with essential needs like food and clothing, which sometimes posed significant challenges,” she shared. “Female soccer wasn’t given the priority it deserved, and she would return from games with meager earnings.” Despite the barriers, her mother’s dedication became Fatuma’s inspiration to pursue football as not just a sport, but an avenue to empowerment. She is now a center-back defender with CFK Africa’s national team, Kibera Soccer Women FC. 

Fatuma Ramadham, Kibera Soccer Women FC center-back defender (Photo Credit: Vivian Adhiambo)

Starting her football journey at a young age, Fatuma’s dedication to the game enabled her to attend secondary school on a scholarship. “I was fortunate to secure a high school football scholarship, which not only enabled me to pursue my education but also provided invaluable opportunities on the football field. Through football, I’ve had the privilege of traveling abroad and gaining profound life lessons. It has taught me resilience and the importance of standing up for myself, as I’ve come to realize that my values are what truly define me.” 

Fatuma has navigated challenges as a female player, especially being from an informal settlement. “The issue of gender inequality in football is glaringly evident, especially when comparing the earnings of male and female players. This disparity in pay between male and female puts female players at a significant disadvantage.  

Moreover, there’s a prevailing belief that only boys can succeed in this industry, further perpetuating gender bias and limiting opportunities for female players. It’s essential to address these systemic inequalities and advocate for equal recognition, support, and compensation for female players in football. We must work towards creating a level playing field where talent and dedication, not gender, determine one’s success in the sport.” 

The Kibera Soccer Women FC celebrate after a win (Photo Credit: KSWFC)

Fatuma is determined to use her national platform to advocate for issues affecting girls. By using her voice at seminars and tournaments, she has raised awareness of issues facing young women in informal settlements, such as access to sanitary towels and combatting gender-based violence. “I believe in empowering individuals with knowledge and skills that extend beyond the football field, ensuring holistic development and creating positive impacts within our community.”  

She is particularly passionate about combatting gender-based violence. “It’s essential to implement comprehensive strategies to prevent and respond to gender-based violence within the football community and beyond. This includes raising awareness, providing education on consent and respectful relationships, establishing support systems for survivors, and holding perpetrators accountable.” 

Fatuma is not only a talented player; she is using her voice to challenge gender biases within the football industry and push for fair compensation and opportunities for women. 

As a social change champion with CFK Africa, Fatuma looks forward to mentoring young women, sharing her experiences, and empowering them to pursue their passions while investing in their education and future.

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