JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AFP) - The small girl zigzags between plastic cones with a football, hardly obstructed by her pink tulle dress as she attempts to master the game, and life lessons from her coach.
As Sinethemba, 6, grasps football skills with other children, their trainers impart crucial points that range from the importance of a healthy diet to the dangers of unprotected sex for the varying ages from five to 15 years old.
South Africa has been seized by football fever ahead of the 2010 World Cup, and FIFA is making the most of a sport loved by children to attract them into the "Football for Hope" programme in the country's poorest townships.
Every Monday after school, children in the heart of Johannesburg's oldest shantytown Alexandra, take part in the unconventional training where the message includes boys being encouraged to respect their female partners.
This is a crucial message in South Africa where a quarter of men admit to having raped at least once in their lifetime, according to a study done in August.
"If a father at home is sexually abusing a little girl she's got to be able to stand up for herself and say I was taught on the field today you're not supposed to do that. You're my father and I respect you but no, this is my body," said Sibulele Sibaca, the Programme Director of Play Soccer SA.
Coach Catherine Khosana, an 18-year old who is herself still in high school, said the goal was to keep children off the street while teaching them to respect each other and take care of themselves.
"For cultural reasons, we had to convince the parents that it will be in the benefit of their daughters ... we told them it is not for soccer only, it is about how to have a healthy lifestyle."
To illustrate her point, the volunteer coach shows her training manual. Each illustrated exercise is accompanied by a paragraph on its purpose: promoting a healthy diet, highlighting the dangers of tobacco or alcohol and the fight against AIDS.
Since 2005, FIFA has supported dozens of projects like this around the world through "Football for Hope" but for the first time it is casting the spotlight on its work at the World Cup.
The programme will culminate in its own World Cup with 32 teams from deprived areas coming to compete from five continents.
Players from Palestine and Israel have teamed up and may meet Rwanda's team which mixes Hutu and Tutsi - who fought each other in the devastating civil war in the early 90s.
The aim, according to Federico Addiechi of FIFA's social responsibility department, is to "use football for a greater cause".
"Children adore football, it is easy to have them in a regular programme," he emphasized in an interview with AFP.
"But their coaches aren't just their coaches, they give education on peace, gender equality, health issues..."
Sinethambe may be too young to play in the tournament, but this hasn't dampened her enthusiasm for the game.
"They teach us to play the ball... One day, I would like to be one of the Banyana Banyana," she said excitedly of her aspirations to join the national woman's soccer side.
|Lewandowski demands focus ahead of Christmas|
|Klopp right to rotate at Liverpool – Neville|
|Donnarumma plays down Milan exit rumours|
|Barkley could leave in January – Allardyce|
|Pulisic voted youngest-ever male USA player of the year|
|Griezmann will be allowed to leave – Simeone|
|Guardiola appears to aim another dig at Mourinho|
|Vardy relishing Fleetwood return|
|Almiron blocked from becoming Las Palmas coach|
|Ligue 1 adopts VAR from next season|
|Calabria extends AC Milan contract|
|Everton give new deals to Calvert-Lewin, Holgate & Kenny|
|Under-fire Hughes promises results will come for Stoke|
|Mourinho asked to explain pre-Manchester derby comments|
|Stoger sets Dortmund end of year target|
|Dyche: No swaggering from high-flying Burnley|
|Watzke plays down Nagelsmann rumour as Dortmund plan for 2018|
|Guardiola´s record runs with Manchester City, Bayern Munich and Barcelona compared|
|Benteke goal drought a concern for Hodgson|
|City look frightening – Rose|
|Kahn regrets rejecting Manchester United|
|Bayern wrapping up Ribery for Christmas|
|Wilshere no closer to signing fresh Arsenal contract|
|Resurgent Rooney has Europe´s best shot-conversion record|
|Pastore bullish over PSG chances against Madrid|
|Independiente boss overjoyed by ´dream´ Copa Sudamericana success|
|Silva is an animal - Guardiola|
|Wenger not blaming Sanchez for Arsenal´s goal woes|
|Mourinho can´t find room for misfiring Mkhitaryan|
|Guardiola tells fans Man City won´t stop after record-breaking win|
|Mirabelli: Donnarumma has to beg Milan if he wants to leave|
|Bayern lacked verve, says Heynckes|
|Di Maria wants more game time at PSG after goalscoring display|
|Gattuso: Donnarumma shaken by abuse from AC Milan fans|
|Pellegrino calls for Southampton reaction|
|Benitez ´needs to know´ extent of Newcastle´s transfer budget|
|Zidane will not request striker signing despite Benzema blanks|
|Bournemouth excellent in Old Trafford loss – Howe|
|Wilshere´s performance ´very positive´, says Wenger|
|Pochettino challenges Spurs to keep top-four berth|
|I´d be in Brazil if the title race was over – Mourinho|
|It was hard to watch - Clement wowed by City´s dominance of Swansea|
|Bailly may require surgery on ´serious´ ankle injury|
|Klopp uncertain on Solanke´s disallowed goal|
|Guardiola sure record-breaking City won´t get complacent|
|Puel focuses on Leicester win, not Southampton revenge|
|Strasbourg 2 Paris Saint-Germain 4: Revenge is sweet for Emery´s men|
|Tottenham 2 Brighton and Hove Albion 0: Aurier scores a fluke as Spurs go fourth|
|West Ham 0 Arsenal 0: Wasteful Gunners drop points for third game in a row|
|Liverpool 0 West Brom 0: More frustration for Klopp as hosts draw again|
|Manchester United 1 Bournemouth 0: Lukaku eases scoring concerns after derby day woes|
|AC Milan 3 Verona 0: Bonaventura shines as Gattuso´s side march on|
|Newcastle United 0 Everton 1: Rooney haunts Magpies again|
|Manchester City set new Premier League winning streak|
|Swansea City 0 Manchester City 4: Silva sparkles as Guardiola´s record-breakers march on|
|Southampton 1 Leicester City 4: Puel serves up Saints revenge|
|Bayern Munich 1 Cologne 0: Lewandowski opens nine-point gap in Bundesliga|
|Mourinho slams Manchester derby penalty decision in programme notes|
|This is my last season at Monaco – Fabinho|
|Bale: Football would be better without VAR|
|Thought Mayweather v McGregor was 2017´s biggest sporting event? Think again!|
|Manchester United´s Gomes pens professional contract|
|Al Jazira 1 Real Madrid 2: Bale spares Spanish blushes at Club World Cup|
|Ronaldo takes goalscoring record from Messi|
|Al Jazira stun Real Madrid to take half-time lead in Club World Cup|
|Neymar returns to PSG after break|
|Iniesta would welcome Barca pursuit of Coutinho|
|FA extends deadline for Manchester clubs to respond over alleged derby fracas|
|Dybala clever enough to listen to Nedved - Buffon|
|Willian not ready to walk out on Chelsea|
|Arsenal striker Lacazette not counting on title miracle|
|World Cup glory worth €350,000 to Germany stars|
|I live day by day - Buffon ponders Euro 2020|
|West Ham eyeing Wilshere swoop in January|
|Klopp reveals hamstring scare for Liverpool star Salah|
|FFA refuses to speculate on Scolari amid Socceroos interest|
|Ronaldo hoping to play with Benzema and Bale again|
|Mourinho takes aim at reporters as Man United boss leaves news conference|
|´Bull****´ to suggest Chelsea can catch Man City – Conte|
|Pordenone would´ve deserved Coppa Italia progression, admits Spalletti|
|Man City haven´t won anything yet – Gundogan|
|Willian: Chelsea will keep fighting for Premier League title|
|Burnley aren´t the real deal – Dyche|
|Stoger wants to bring best out of BVB after breakthrough victory|
|Conte praises contribution of Hazard, Willian and Pedro|
|Inter 0 Pordenone 0 (AET, 5-4 on penalties): Nagatomo spares Serie A leaders´ blushes|