Following the dream: interview with Reta, 6 months later.

“They still think that girls should get married at a young age and take care of their families instead of playing football.”


The club is called Juban Danja, located in the village with a same name – Juban, just 20 minutes away from Shkoder. This is Reta’s new home, an all-girls football club established 12 years ago, where she now works as an athletics coach.

Your role in club?

I currently work a as conditioning coach with the group of girls that will play in the Championship Games (regional championship for kids of different ages). The lead coach is Ferdinand Jaku, he is a great man and is helping me so much.

About the club.

The club is for girls of all ages. They also had a team that played in the national competitions but it no longer takes part.

The founder of the club had a great passion for football, but he also wanted to come up with something special, so he decided on establishing the first football club for girls in Albania. He started it together with his wife and two daughters which are both players now.

What are some of the biggest obstacles the club is facing with?

The club is going through some hard financial problems. Being the first women’s club in Albania does not really help them a lot. They also have a lack of training equipment and also parents not allowing their girls joining the club (as a consequence of traditional thinking).

What is the club’s goal, and what are the girls’ dreams?

All the girls dream about is to write history and keep the title – the first women playing football in Albania.

 The club’s goal is also to participate in the Regional Championships again.

What is the girls’ story?

The girls come from the villages around the club’s location. Different ages and religions but they have one thing in common; they come from the strong male-dominated football environment.

Men in the area around still think that girls should get married at young age and take care of their families instead of playing football.

 The local girls are from poor families and the economical circumstances sometimes do not allow them to follow the clubs activities even though it’s all for free. They don’t pay for the field, the coach or training at all. The founder of the club covers it all.

Your message?

“If you watch football, see players running and your heart beats faster that might be your path. Maybe football is destined to be your passion and a dream. That happened to me.”

I would like to call NGOs or individuals that could help on donating materials for training or jerseys that they maybe they don’t use anymore. Their donation would make a strong impact.

My call would also be: if you have people saying that you are in the wrong direction, that you will get harmed if continuing, then dear ladies, you already know you are on the right path. Do what you know is best for you, a person with unrealised dreams is destined for regret and blaming themselves in a near future.

Follow the club at facebook.com/JubanDanjaWomenFootball

Part 1: Reta’s dream

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Thank you Reta,
Polona