So we went to our first soccer practice of principal photography for the feature documentary Goals for Girls, about a girls soccer team in the largest shantytown in Buenos Aires, the Villa 31. The team has grown dramatically since we started shooting in 2008! Now the field is filled with 25 girls from 13 to 21, kicking, passing, and yes, occasionally cursing! But one girl who is dying to play couldn’t. . . Chechu, who at 16 just became a mom.
She was there at practice with her baby boy, Joaquin, in arms. We interviewed her about what it was like to spend 8 months on the sidelines as she was pregnant. . . for her, the pregnancy was a far bigger burden than motherhood, in part because now she can play soccer again and her son is very quiet. But today she was unable to practice because she was unable to get someone to watch her son. The father was going to, but had to work: “We’re broke”, she said.
So Chechu cheered from the sidelines. Neither her mother nor the father’s mother help much. While some volunteers who come to the practices can often look after older children, looking after a 4 month old is quite different.
After the practice we filmed the girls weekly meeting where they decided on a name for the team (finally!) which means “allies” in English and the colors of the team, which will be white and blue. The girls then talked about the importance of the anniversary of the military dictatorship which was celebrated the day before, and we interviewed a team member about her dreams to try out for the Boca Jrs women’s division, and how women face discrimination when they play soccer.All and all, a great start for our feature documentary!