Football and sport in Australia is often viewed through a male lens leading to fewer opportunities for women and girls.
Creating a culture of diversity and inclusion that supports female voices is not only the right thing to do but is also essential for the growth and sustainability of our game locally.
With women and girls representing 27% of the football players in northern NSW, NNSWF aspires to increase this gender parity by 2027 with the help of the NSW Government’s Football Legacy Program.
Sandy Williams, President of the Hallidays Point Sports Club (HPSC) believes that everyone deserves the right to be included in the game of football no matter their gender, noting that female participation and retention is a key pillar at her club.
“It is absolutely a high priority at HPSC. Our female teams, in particular, pride themselves on creating a safe space for women where they feel supported, both on and off the field, therefore maximising player retention”, says Williams.
Williams recognises that good female role models are beneficial when it comes to encouraging girls to play at their club. With this idea always top of mind, HPSC has witnessed an increase in female participation across all of its teams, “we’ve been working hard behind the scenes to retain the players in their women’s team who are now in their fourth season. Our under 6 and under 7 program runs at our home field every Saturday, consisting of almost 50% female players.
“We also currently have a high number of female coaches within our club, which has in the past supported some of these women who are in the process of attaining their C-Licence. This support not only builds not only their confidence, but also benefits the players of the club,” Williams adds.
When asked to describe the biggest lesson she’s learnt from football, Williams says that the score on the leaders board isn’t always an indication of whether you are ‘winning’ or ‘losing’. “Some of my best games have come off the back of a ‘loss’. I’m part of a team that has created a good culture and is supportive and inclusive, and that’s more of a win in my eyes,” says Williams.
Find out more about the strategy supporting female football.
This web story is supported by the NSW Government under the NSW Football Legacy Program.
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