Communities across the country are hosting events in conjunction with the NGWSD celebration. Even if your event is virtual or if February 1st doesn’t fit your calendar – make sure to post your event today!
NGWSD recognizes student-athletes, champion athletes, coaches, administrators and lawmakers committed to providing equitable access to sports for all girls and women.
[Being an athlete,] I have found a home, extended family, and a way to channel my energy. More specifically, as an adaptive athlete, I have a chance to showcase my prosperity – despite my new disability. More often than not, women and girls are told what they can and cannot do, especially when it comes to physical activity. It is important for us to play sports to break down the barriers, assumptions, and restrictions placed on us; and to show that we really can do all things. Gender equality in sports means that everyone has the same opportunity to excel at what they want to do, and every young child watching sports has someone to look up to.
I would play sports with my brothers and that was the only thing we had to bond over. Growing up I was made fun of for being a girl in sports but I didn’t quit. I am glad I didn’t quit because now I have a strong relationship with my siblings, and I made a lot of friends while playing sports. I think it is important to show how women can do the same things men can. Sports have allowed me to play with my family and friends. Having the same opportunities as men means having the same respect as male athletes. It means a lot to women because some women around the world do not have the choice to play. We will always be strong enough to play sports.
[Sports have] impacted my life quite a bit, honestly, my whole life. It’s allowed me to meet wonderful people [you know] visit different states and you know, just go across the country and [you know] play the sport that I love and actually meet a lot of people that became like my sisters as well. [Sports have taught me] discipline, being relentless, and just hungry, wanting more, wanting to win and that grit.
Gender equity in sports means that I can shower after a hard practice or game because there’s a locker room dedicated to women in practice facilities and stadiums. Gender equity means enough gender neutral bathrooms or women’s bathrooms at the same distance and volume there are men’s room’s in sporting facilities. Gender equity means athletic trainers carry tampons and equipment staff have hydrogen peroxide available. Gender Equity means not getting all my steps in while finding a bathroom or even going to a public restroom in a stadium and then having to argue with event staff because they don’t know that there’s a female on coaching staff and the second half has begun because they don’t believe you, and having to google your team coaching staff and yourself so they could give you permission to go do your job and then being yelled at because ‘where were you?’ Hypothetically, of course. Gender equity means lactation spaces and times. It means child care and emergency emergency child care. It means gender is diverse at the highest levels of each program, team, company and organization, and if after searching high and low for a qualified candidate and if they can’t find one, they train one. Gender equity means we are specifically considered or not considered based on how they think we will be treated or how the public will receive us or on any person responding to our existence. Gender equity acknowledges gender inequities and accommodates where there are societal limits. Gender equity means not having to have a real conversation with my significant other if I can afford to continue to coach football because I don’t know how I will continue to afford child care, for my amazing 7 year old.
I think it’s imperative for moms to have support to keep participating in sports because we know that there are so many barriers that limit women’s participation, and part of what can become of womanhood is motherhood, and if we really are trying to make sure that we create an equitable landscape for women to keep participating, we know that we have to also include support and resources for moms to still be able to do so.
Sports has greatly impacted my life, it taught me how to be a leader, it taught me how to be a team player. It is everything that you see right now as to who I am. It also helped me recognize how to just get into the game. Just get in the game where you see that there are holes and support as best as possible so that I can help my team get to the finish line together, and that’s metaphorical for life and how I see myself, you know, really helping advance not only our communities, and the world, but you know women in sports but also in the workplace across all industries.
I believe all women and girls should have access to be able to find their passion and be able to build those life skills and make friends and feel safe doing something that they enjoy.
[For the future of women’s sports I would like to see] equal pay in every–in all professional sports for females to really making sure there’s female sports in the club age that if a little girl wants to play football, she has the access and she can do it.
Sports taught me stregth, resilience, tenacity, and perseverance. They taught me how to love something despite it not always being easy to love. Sports hone the competitive spirit needed to fight for what you want, whether it be a win, a grade, or a job, and they play a vital role in building strong, determined, passionate, and driven women- the kind of women that will be movers and shakers in the world. Gender equality doesn’t necessarily mean that we all have the same resources and opportunities; it means that there is an active fight to obtain equal resources and opportunities. It means seeing that each gender is equally worthy of having these resources and opportunities, and not invalidating the needs of particular athletes based on their genetic disposition.
I personally ran my 100 marathons dedicated to women and girls because I personally saw [you know] how sometimes we don’t have as many opportunities as you know, other people. So it’s definitely the reason why I did it, but I honestly think like, yeah, it should have already be given automatically.
Participating in sports has changed my life completely, if anything, I don’t know where I would be in my life if it wasn’t for sports. Iit went ahead and gave me this confidence–it gave me so much, I gained so many things from doing sports–by running marathons that now I’m like–I’m a completely different person thanks to sports.
Please check back in the Fall for updated resources designed to help you plan, organize, promote and host your own NGWSD activities. Please contact Morgan Powell at MPowell@WomensSportsFoundation.org with any questions.
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