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Why you should think twice about ignoring women’s sports

By: Katja Iversen; Originally Posted on Women in the World 

If money talks, then the Women’s World Cup was a whisper at best. After Team USA’s win over Japan in the final last Sunday, the shocking disparity between women’s and men’s World Cup winnings has been thrown into sharp focus. To add insult to injury, FIFA’s financial statements relegate the Women’s World Cup to “other FIFA events.” Read More...

 

Girls in sport: More and better research needed to level the playing field

By Flavie Halais; Originally posted on Devex 

The movement to use sports as a catalyst for improving the lives of girls and women is growing, but what’s the evidence that supports the various benefits and uses of sports? And what kind of additional research is needed to help development professionals design smarter programs?

Researchers and practitioners who gathered at the Girl Power in Play Symposium, held last month in Ottawa, Canada, weighed in on how we can help build a better case for the role sports can play in the post-2015 agenda. Read More...

Girls’ Participation in Sports: What We Know and What We Need to Know

By: Martha Brady, Population Council 

This month Canada is hosting the largest and most diverse Women’s World Cup tournament in history. With 24 teams (up from 16 in 2011), hundreds of players, and tens of thousands of fans from across the globe, the 2015 Women’s World Cup clearly illustrates the extraordinary growth in women’s sports. In addition to the expected teams from Europe, England, Canada, the United States, Japan, China, and Australia, exciting and powerful teams from low and middle income countries have been performing on this world stage. Nigeria, Cote d’Ivoire, Cameroon, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Ecuador, Korea, among others, have played to record crowds in stadiums throughout Canada. Read More...

Global Leaders: Get More Girls in the Game!


Against the backdrop of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, a coalition of leading athletes and advocates are calling on policymakers and sporting organizations worldwide to increase investments in girls’ sports programs as a path to improve gender and health equality globally. The Call to Action was launched on June 19th at the Girl Power in Play Symposium, hosted by global advocacy organizations Women Deliver, UNICEF, Right to Play, One Goal and Global Alliance for Improved Ntrition (GAIN). Read More...

Girls in sport: A powerful game changer for the SDGs

By: Katja Iversen, Maria Bobenrieth; Originally posted on Devex

We’ve all heard stories of professional athletes who have defied the odds to keep playing the sport they love. Take Maria Toor Pakay who grew up in South Waziristan, Pakistan, where playing squash, or any sport, was for boys only; but Maria couldn’t be kept off the court. She pretended to be a boy in order to keep playing and today is Pakistan’s number one squash player.

Maria refused to let society restrict her, and instead, she showed us all what girls can do. Now she is championing change through a foundation that helps girls access education and sport — contributing to a stronger, more just Pakistan. Read More...

When #GirlsCan Play, Everybody Wins!

By: Brittany Tatum, Women Deliver

Since the start of the seventh FIFA Women’s World Cup on 5 June in Canada, there has been a definite buzz around women in sports. Much of the conversation has been targeted towards the lack of coverage and funding women’s sports receives on a global scale. Women Deliver knows the positive ripple effect that occurs when the world invests in girls – an investment that must include access to sport.

Sports programs provide a safe space where girls can learn, grow, and prosper. Even more, sport programs can serve as a powerful platform to connect girls and adolescents with vital information, skills, and strategies needed to tackle health risks and creative positive changes in their lives, particularly related to sexual and reproductive health. Read More...

#GirlsCan Campaign Kicks Off with FIFA Women’s World Cup to Empower Girls in Sports

By Marinella Matejcic; Originally posted on Global Voices 

As the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada started kicked off on June 6, a number of organizations joined forces in launching the #GirlsCan advocacy campaign. Women Deliver, UNICEF, Right to Play, GAIN and One Goal are using the FIFA as a backdrop to raise awareness of how sports can positively influence girls’ lives and call for more research and funding for girls’ sports. Read more...

Getting Girls in the Game – And What it Can Mean for Development

By: Katja Iversen, CEO, Women Deliver and Joanna Hoffman, Special Projects Manager, Women Deliver; Published by the Center for Global Health and Diplomacy

Girls playing sports is not about winning gold medals. It’s about self-esteem, learning to compete, and learning how hard you have to work in order to achieve your goals.
-Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Olympian and Former Track and Field World Champion

Right after Nawal El Moutawakel crossed the finish line in the 400 meter hurdles at the 1984 Olympics, the King of Morocco called to speak with her. Nawal was astonished as the King told her how proud he was.  She indeed made history that day, as the first Moroccan athlete – and the first Muslim female athlete – to win an Olympic gold medal. “As a hurdler, I’m used to jumping barriers,” she told The Olympic Review. “Now these barriers are coming down in other countries because I showed Muslim women a wider horizon.” Read more...

 

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