News from the front.
Successful World Cup Bid Gives Generational Opportunity to Advance Game
Women in Football Welcomes FIFA Evaluation of 2023 Bid
W-League needs more investment to be one of the top world leagues
Women in Football launches to support gender equality in the sport
Women's Role in Sport Pivotal to Growth of Grassroots
May 3, 2021
More than half of all women who are involved in sport have experienced some form of discrimination in the past two years according to a research report released by Women in Football Australia Inc (WiF).
The research report, entitled ‘Play. Watch. Do.’ looks at the involvement of women in football as players, parents of players, consumers and volunteers.
The research was conducted by Core Data in February 2021 and found that discrimination was most prevalent for young women aged 18-30 years.
Amongst women involved in football, discrimination was experienced by
- 89.4% of those who play the game;
- 42% of those with children who play; and
- by 74.8% of those who are volunteers in the game.
The major forms of discrimination were reported as being suggestive comments, inappropriate behaviour, or bypassed for high level roles as a volunteer.
The report also found a high correlation between the number of children who play a sport and the number of women who are involved as volunteers in the same sport.
While 15% of grassroots volunteers are Football volunteers, when it comes to women whose children play, more than one-in-four mums (25.7%) are volunteers.
Almost two-in-five women are aware that Australia is to co-host the women’s football World Cup in 2023, but amongst those who are involved in the game the awareness rate doubles. Almost two-thirds of all women have an interest in attending a game.
The respondents identified the priority issues for improving the involvement of women in football as access (75.4%), cost (48.9%) and safety (48.1%).
The report outlines a number of areas where football federations and clubs could take action to increase the contribution and improve the experience of women involved in football, including:
- examining further the findings in relation to discrimination, sexism and sexist attitudes;
- examining different models for engaging volunteers; and
- providing incentives for grassroots clubs to improve their engagement with women in the game.
WiF concludes in the report that professional sport cannot survive and prosper without strong grassroots, as it increases opportunities for inclusivity and growth; it is the source of future players, coaches and officials; and it also helps enhance credibility and reputation.
* * *
Winners of Women in Football Awards Named
September 9, 2021
A volunteer from Hobart, a young coach from Melbourne, and an online news site specialising in women’s football are the inaugural recipients of the Women in Football Awards in 2021.
The Women in Football Awards were introduced to celebrate the achievements of women who are involved in football in a range of capacities, and to encourage and inspire others also.
“We thought it was important to recognise the many tens of thousands of people who help to make football tick week-in, week-out, at grassroots clubs and elsewhere.
“Often, such people are taken for granted but they are incredibly valuable to their club, the sport and our community and it’s important to recognise their efforts and accomplishments.”
The three winners are:
Volunteer of the Year: Sandra Roberts, South Hobart Football Club
Emerging Leader Award: Aish Ravi, Bentleigh Cobras Football Club, Bayside Futsal Social
Media Award: Beyond 90
Recipients of certificates of distinction were also named in the Volunteer and Emerging Leader categories.
The Women in Football Awards ceremony was originally scheduled to take place as part of a community football tournament this coming weekend on the Central Coast, north of Sydney, which was cancelled due to the Covid lockdowns.
Instead, the winners are announced via a series of short videos produced by Flix Productions of Adelaide, and with two of the videos narrated by Simon Hill of Paramount Plus.
“The Women in Football Awards are a way of showing people that the many volunteer hours they spend in football are appreciated and admired.
“We believe the inaugural award winners are incredibly deserving of their respective awards, and we hope it inspires and motivates others to contribute to their local club or other football activity to their full potential also.”
The Women in Football Awards were created by Women in Football Australia Inc, a national member-based charity established in 2019, that aims to ensure girls and women can contribute effectively to football at the level they wish to do so. The Women in Football Awards are supported by the NSW Government’s Office of Sport.
2021 Winner: Sandra Roberts, South Hobart FC, Tasmania
2021 Certificate of Distinction:
Imogen Caruso, Essendon Royals SC, Victoria
Jodie McGill, Roselea FC, NSW
Purpose: The Women in Football Volunteer of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer with grassroots football in their community who has demonstrated a significant contribution or commitment to a team, organisation, special event, or programme.
How it’s decided: The Volunteer award is decided by the executive committee of Women in Football Australia based on nominations from the football community.
About Sandra Roberts
Sandra has volunteered as team manager with South Hobart Football Club’s senior women’s teams for seven years. Sandra supports the operation of the three teams comprising more than 50 players and six coaching staff. Sandra consistently demonstrates her dedication through being extremely organised and committed to professionalism in women’s football.
Her efforts mean that the women feel confident, empowered, and valued so everyone who wants to play can.
This is critical at this age when many women stop playing, and valuable for the wellbeing of a generation of women as it opens more opportunities for women to play who may otherwise have left the sport.
With a welcome, warm, calm approach Sandra treats all players regardless of age, background, skill, or prior involvement with the club. Her commitment to ensuring all players are supplied with quality uniforms and the social care of the team helps with building inclusivity.
As well as her considerable volunteer work, Sandra supports a business and family, caring for children and ageing parents.
2021 Winner: Aish Ravi, Bentleigh Cobras FC and Bayside Futsal Women
2021 Certificate of Distinction:
Cas Wright, New Lambton FC, NSW
Purpose: The Emerging Leader award is to a volunteer who has demonstrated leadership and commitment to achieving greater gender equality in the game.
This may be way of, for example:
ensuring Boards and/or Committees meet the 40/40/20 targets of the FFA Constitution;
actively encouraging diversity in positions – not just in terms of gender but also in terms of different organisational roles, age, cultural backgrounds, and sexual preference;
demonstrating a commitment to accountability in gender equality;
getting the messaging right so it appeals to women and men;
initiating change and encouraging women to participate more fully in decision-making roles;
challenging and championing gender-based practices.
How it’s decided: The Emerging Leader Award is decided by the executive committee of Women in Football Australia based on nominations from the football community.
About Aish Ravi
At 30 years of age, Aish Ravi is evolving as an outstanding leader and advocate for women’s participation in football.
She is an AFC B-Licensed coach player-coach of Bentleigh Cobras Football Club and she established Bayside Futsal Women, a free social futsal competition now enjoyed by more than 400 players who might not otherwise have played.
Aish is co-founder of the Women’s Coaching Association – which supports women coaches across all sports – a co-opted member of the Board of the Football Coaches Association of Australia and is currently studying for a PhD with Monash University looking at the experience of women football coaches.
Aish shares Women in Football’s commitment in encouraging girls and women to participate in the game at whatever capacity and level they wish to do so and is particularly passionate about getting more women involved in coaching because ‘you can’t be what you don’t see’.
2021 Winner: Beyond 90
Purpose: The Media award is made to an individual or media organisation for journalism that consistently provides coverage and stories that promote participation of girls and women and helps promote the game at community and professional level.
How it’s decided: The award is decided by the executive committee of Women in Football Australia Inc. with nominees assessed on the quality, comprehensiveness, balance, and consistency of coverage in the year to 30 June 2021.
About Beyond 90
Beyond90.com.au is helping to change the narrative of sports media by focusing on women’s football, promoting positive media representation of many of the women in football and through new and emerging sports journalists and broadcasters. As well as their online format, they produce a podcast and encourage many younger – mostly female – voices to become involved in writing and talking about the game. Beyond90 is helping to reshape and redefine the future landscape of football media.