The U.S. Women's National Soccer Team is currently hosting its 4th annual SheBelieves Cup. Founded in 2016, this women's invitational was an initiative created by members of the United States Women's National Team and coincides with their SheBelieves movement of inspiring girls to accomplish their goals - both athletically and others. March is also considered Women's History Month, so with both of these movements occurring simultaneously, the USWNT made their match this past weekend an even greater celebration of inspirational women.
On March 2, the USWNT made to honor incredible, inspiring, and iconic women. Each member of the national team chose a woman who inspired them to follow their dreams and get to where they are today, and wore that individual's name on the back of their jersey in place of their name. Women ranged from different time periods, different backgrounds, athletic and not athletic, old and young. Some of the exemplary individuals chosen by the team members where: Jennifer Lawrence; Sally Ride; Serena Williams; Carrie Underwood; Elena Delle Donne; Briana Scurry; Cardi B; Doris Burke; J.K. Rowling; Malala Yousafzai; Maya Angelou; Mia Hamm; Abby Wambach; Robin Roberts; Heather O'Reilly; Sojourner Truth; Beyoncé; Audre Lorde; Ruth Bader Ginsburg; Katie Sowers; Tina Fey; Jessica Mendoza; & Mother Teresa.
The U.S. women's team has long since inspired young women to go after their dreams. Since the time of Mia Hamm, Michelle Akers, and Julie Foudy, to Abby Wambach and Hope Solo, and now Carli Lloyd, Alex Morgan, Tobin Heath, and Megan Rapinoe, this team has always been filled with powerful women. With their track record alone, this team is a global powerhouse, having won multiple World Cups & Olympic titles. Their efforts to inspire other young girls by honoring the women who inspired them was such a unique and impactful moment. Time and time again we see this team not only come to compete but to inspire. I was once among the young girls, watching their games, cheering on my favorite players and analyzing the way they orchestrated play after play. I was enamored by these women, and they pushed me to be a better player and athlete. But they also inspired me to be a strong woman, in sports and in life.
I think that their focus on inspiring the next generation of girls is truly extraordinary. With the MeToo Movement, and continued efforts for more rights and opportunities for women, the USWNT is on par for inspiring women to take what is theirs and follow their dreams. I am so thankful for what this team gave to me as an aspiring youth athlete, and I am elated to see that so many girls in generations to come will also be impacted by these awe-inspiring women.