Last week, the FIBA Women's Afrobasket 2023 wrapped up in Rwanda, uniting teams from diverse African regions. A standout was a young Rwandan player Hope Butera who significantly contributed to her team's success.
From a humble background and raised in an orphanage, Hope Butera's journey to basketball stardom is nothing short of inspiring. Introduced to sports at a young age, she found her passion in basketball and grew into a standout player.
"I have always loved sports, I used to play volleyball for a little and then one coach saw me, he then invited me to a basketball camp, I started playing basketball, I got to love it. I kept doing it and still doing it." says Butera
"I got invited to under 16 national team, I did good and I was like ‘oh I can do this’, then went to under 18, then senior team".
Despite being able to navigate her way in the sports Industry, Hope says one thing that is holding many women back from joining basketball is lack of confidence and not seeing any value in sports.
"Women in sports hasn’t been given its value, that it deserves, but after how we played , I think a lot of people are inspired to play because they see , we can do it , we can be better than men. Believe in yourself, keep working , You might not see the results today but eventually you can be great and you are going to see those results that you want"
At only 22 years old, Hope's dedication led has her to represent Rwanda on various platforms, including the U18 women's basketball team in the FIBA U-18 Women's African Championships in 2016, where she played a crucial role in her team's fourth-place finish. Her recent performance in the FIBA Afrobasketball women’s games showcased her skills, averaging an impressive 6 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 1.6 assists per game.
Africanews correspondent Daina Rwiza reports that while Nigeria's D'Tigress won their fourth FIBA Women's Afrobasketball last weekend, Rwanda made their own history by reaching the top four for the first time in their basketball history with Hope's contribution; something that showcases the remarkable impact of perseverance and community support.