Força Foundation News

Celebrating 10 years of impact, Futebol dá força Foundation announces new Chairperson and CEO

Founder Cecilia Safaee (left) is suiting up - from grassroots to the Board room, with co-founder Sarita Jacob Simone (right) taking the lead on global operations.

Celebrating 10 years of impact, Futebol dá força Foundation announces new Chairperson and CEO as founders share the global leadership of the Foundation’s continued development. 

Futebol dá força Foundation celebrates our 10 year anniversary by doubling the amount of girls empowered at our Center of Reference in Mozambique - where our journey started in 2012. After two years of no football due to the pandemic, we’re back on the field this year with close to 20.000 girls only in Mozambique. 

Throughout the pandemic, we have continued to prevent child marriage and early unwanted pregnancies. We have only registered five cases of teenage pregnancy among our girls in Mozambique during the pandemic, compared to the national average of 120 per day. 99% of our girls have returned to schools as they reopened post-COVID-19, compared to less than 50% among girls that do not play football with Futebol dá força. 

The work that started on a dirt pitch with one football team in Mozambique ten years ago, has today become a leading global Foundation empowering close to 30.000 girls through our football coaches that lead behaviour change in their local communities and empower girls through our evidence-based methodology in 30 countries across all continents. 

After 10 years of leading, developing and scaling up the Futebol dá força Foundation, our founder Cecilia Safaee, will continue to lead the strategic development of the Foundation as Chairperson of the Board, to be elected at the Board’s Annual Meeting on May 20. Cecilia is handing over operations and the continued expansion of the Foundation to Sara ‘Sarita’ Jacob Simone, co-founder and CEO at our Center of Reference in Mozambique. 

Going forward, Sarita will not only be leading the development of Futebol dá força at our Center of Reference in Mozambique, but also our expansion and implementation worldwide. As our global CEO, she will continue to build on our successful model for social impact developed in Mozambique, with the ambition of taking it to all football fields around the world. 

“I cannot think of anyone better suited to lead Futebol dá força’s continued development than Sarita, having built up our Center of Reference in Mozambique, where we embarked on this venture together ten years ago. Sarita will continue to ensure that an ever-growing number of girls are empowered, while also securing their long term equal rights and opportunities by working closely with local stakeholders and leading behaviour change in local communities.” - says Cecilia Safaee.

Sarita will work alongside our COO Kadia Sow and Technical Director Mike Ndebele, and continue our legacy of developing Futebol dá força from the inside-out, together with our Ambassadors, who empower and support our coaches to put our methodology into practice and empower girls at grassroots level all over the world.

“When I meet the girls that started playing football with us ten years ago, I meet young powerful women - teachers, nurses, professionals, and football players - that today are role models for younger girls. Together with our girls, coaches and ambassadors, and together with local stakeholders, we will continue this legacy and develop Futebol dá força from the grassroots. We will ensure that all girls have a safe space and support, starting on the football field and further in life, by taking Futebol dá força to every football field around the world.” - says Sarita Jacob Simone. 

Cecilia Safaee, Chairperson 
+46 727 272 580
[email protected] 

Sarita Jacob Simone, CEO
+258 84 120 0000
[email protected]