It is often said that a football team should consist of 11 friends. But in the last few years we’ve realized that more than just players are involved in every aspect of the game. Next to the coaches and administrators it is also the female referees who above all play an important role for the visibility and participation of women in football. We learned that the top men’s league in Rwanda is refereed by women, and  that Bibiana Steinhaus made headlines in newspapers as the first female referee in the top men’s German football league. While there are women-only football teams, the idea of places for women in referee training courses is still a dream. This year our games will be refereed by three female referees from Bangladesh, Georgia, and Niger.

Like the teams, the coaches will also work together in new constellations for one week in order to gain and share football experiences and put these to the test. The mixing of players and coaches offers all participants a change from their usual training routine, which will spark new energies and movements. In pairs of two, our almost twenty coaches will face the challenge to guide multilingual teams in a way so that they will be able to cross linguistic and cultural barriers – on and off the pitch. The programme allows the coaches to exchange training methods and experiences, to discuss worries and challenges, and to share moments of success. The programme is moderated by three coaches from Berlin, who see themselves as peers of the international group. Rather than resulting from a pre-given curriculum, the knowledge in coaching will be created by the spontaneous dynamics of the international group of coaches and their physical experience of intercultural communication.

Besides practical units, which focus on training drills that don’t require the use of language, there will be panels on practical questions of coaching and various other topics, such as women in coaching positions, inclusive training methods, etc