Government of Canada announces new collaboration with Right To Play to empower girls in Senegal

Press release

Dakar, Senegal

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced in Dakar a new collaboration with Right To Play to promote girls’ empowerment and gender equality in Senegal. The announcement came at an event attended by the Canadian Ambassador to Senegal, Minister Ahmed Hussen, Raptors President Masai Ujiri, Kayla Alexander, member of the Canadian Olympic Women’s Basketball Team, leaders in the Senegalese and African sport communities, and 40 young Senegalese basketball players.

Since 2002, Right To Play has reached 1.4 million children in seventeen African countries with Canadian-Government–supported programs that protect, empower, and educate children through the power of play. Half of the children in Right To Play programs are girls.

This landmark new program—the first Right To Play program in Senegal—will harness the power of play to strengthen girls’ life and leadership skills, and support them to be active agents of change in their lives, their communities, and society. The program will be implemented in partnership with SEED Project, a Senegalese sport-for-development organization founded by NBA Africa Vice-President Amadou Gallo Fall that provides girls with a supportive environment where they can build life and leadership skills.

“As we gather here today with organizations like Right To Play and SEEDs, we know the impact we can have as a society by empowering our young people,” said Prime Minister Trudeau at the event. “I want to thank Right To Play, who are doing extraordinary work. This collaboration between Canada and Right To Play will have emphasis on the capacity of girls to play sport. We need our girls to continue to play sports, not just for sports, but for our communities and our future.”

While Senegal has experienced high rates of development in the past decade, it still ranks as one of the least developed countries globally. Girls experience persistent barriers to education and empowerment, and often struggle to reach their full potential.

“Girls are crucial advocates for change in their communities. But, too often, their voices aren’t heard, and they’re discouraged from leadership roles,” said Kevin Frey, CEO of Right To Play. “This generous support from the Government of Canada will allow us to work with a leading local organization to build on the work that’s already happening through Senegal’s National Strategy for Equity and Gender Equality and empower girls to dismantle barriers to their success, claim their rights, and be heard.”

“We’re extremely excited and grateful for this partnership with Right To Play and the Government of Canada that will contribute to the scaling of more programs in Senegal,” said Amadou Gallo Fall, founder of SEEDs, Right To Play board member, and Vice-President and Managing Director, NBA Africa.

To arrange an interview with Kevin Frey, CEO of Right To Play, contact Christina Palassio, Senior Manager, Marketing and Communications, at or +1 416 302 1123.

About Right To Play

Right To Play is a global organization that protects, educates, and empowers children through the power of play. In our programs in Africa, the Middle East, and Canada, we are a leader in using sport and play to keep children in school and help them graduate, empower girls to learn and lead, teach children behaviours that keep them healthy and safe, and give children the critical skills they need to communicate. Find out more at


Rebecca Cuthbert

Marketing and Communications Officer

+1 (416) 203-0190 ext. 305