U.S. Giving $125K To Saudi Arabia For Women’s, Youth Sports

By Adam Andrzejewski for RealClearPolicy

The U.S. State Department will give up to $125,000 to nonprofits in Saudi Arabia to encourage women and youth empowerment through sports, according to a grant notice from the U.S. State Department.

The project should involve women and youth from rural areas of Saudi Arabia, and focus on soccer, basketball, motorsports, American football, “or other sports where Saudi women and youth are traditionally underrepresented.”

Other components that should be included in the project are strengthening women’s sports federations in Saudi Arabia, training and certifying women referees, facilitating the collaboration between Saudi and American sports teams and organizations, and creating a public relations campaign to share key program messages with nonparticipants.

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Although the program’s goal to empower Saudi Arabian youth and women is admirable, it has flaws. In a country where women were only granted the right to drive cars in 2018, larger structural barriers to female empowerment are more worthy of attention.

In the short-term, it would be better to increase female participation in government and business.  

Although it is noble to support equal rights of women and young people in all countries around the globe, projects that increase the U.S. national debt must be reconsidered. It is more likely that international charities can help women and their children than the United States.

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