Advertisement

Women in Football vows to celebrate women today and every day

Women in Football are shining a light on the big stars and the hiddern heroes
Women in Football are shining a light on the big stars and the hidden heroes (The FA via Getty Images)

On International Women’s Day 2024, the leading organisation driving gender equality in football is calling on the game to welcome, value and celebrate women not just for one day a year, but today and every day.

Women in Football (WIF) has launched a video created in partnership with Beat Media Group, their content creation partners and longtime advocates of women in the game, showcasing the huge variety of roles performed by women in the sport – from grounds person, broadcaster, journalist, administrator, player, and manager and more… with contributions from Lionesses legend Jill Scott MBE, Chelsea’s record-breaking manager Emma Hayes OBE, trailblazing football commentator Jacqui Oatley MBE and ex-professional footballers and hosts of the Barclays Women’s Championship Show on Sky Sports, Mollie and Rosie Kmita.

Founders of The Powerhouse Project, Mollie, and Rosie are empowering the next generation of female leaders in football.

“It’s important to showcase the role models we have working across the industry and to show young people that anything is possible,” said the Kmitas.

“To shine a light on the inspiring women we have working across the industry also gives them the recognition they deserve.

“Women supporting women is so powerful and to have a campaign that highlights all the amazing work of women in the industry is exactly what we should be showing the world. There is so much to celebrate in women's football, and we should all be proud to advocate that space.

“Women in Football continue to change the landscape and we are proud supporters of their work.”

Women in Football champions female talent across the game in a bid to bring about a change in attitudes to women working in the industry.

Whether celebrating some of football’s earliest female pioneers such as Manchester City’s 1880 founding member Anna Connell, or professional football’s first female physio, Judith Lo, or nominating female employees for Queen’s Honours or industry awards, WIF is dedicated to celebrating contributions by women to our national game.

“There is no job in football that can’t be done by a woman – and done well,” said Women in Football CEO Yvonne Harrison. “Gender should be no barrier to career progression in the game.

“Women are already playing vital roles and adding significant value on and off the pitch. But the Women in Football survey last year showed that 82 per cent of them have experienced discrimination at work.

“Showing support for gender equality on International Women’s Day is great, but one day is not enough. It’s time for football to acknowledge that it depends on the work done by thousands of women all the time, to recognise their contribution, and to push harder for gender equality – today and every day.”

It has been another seismic 12 months for the organisation, with International Women’s Day marking a new working partnership with the English Football League.

The EFL is the latest organisation to join WIF’s Corporate Membership programme, showing their commitment to support the female workforce in the men’s leagues today and every day.

With access to a range of resources for females to create a gender-equal workplace including professional development for women and culture auditing.

Women in Football will return to Wembley for their Be Inspired conference
Women in Football will return to Wembley for their Be Inspired conference (Women in Football)

Other recent corporate members include tms and Sodexo Live! joining the likes of Sky Sports, the Premier League, Brentford, Brighton & Hove Albion, and Manchester City

WIF now has more than 9,000 individual members – trebling in size over the past five years – and an online community of over 80k.

WIF is partner of the Women’s Football Awards 2024 and presenting partner of the Football Business Trailblazer award, while its #GetOnside campaign is encouraging action for gender equality in football and has attracted pledges worth more than £100,000 to level the playing field for women and girls.

Jacqui Oatley MBE, who is a pioneering supporter of WIF, added: “You just have to must look around at the progress we’ve made since Women in Football was first formed all those years ago to see how far we’ve come.

“Every day I see women put their heart and soul into the game – from the players on the pitch to the commentators and everyone else behind the scenes.

“Football is the number one sport globally and women are playing an ever-increasing part in it. Women are an integral part of the football industry – we need to continue to champion and support them for the benefit of the game - today and every day.”