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Sport Ireland launches new Women in Sport Policy

By Tom Walker    29 Mar 2019
Active participation is among the four key areas identified in the new strategy

Sport Ireland has launched a new strategy for women's sport.

The Women in Sport Policy seeks to underline and recognise the opportunity to make a "significant impact on the lives of women through their involvement in sport".

It identifies four key areas in which focused work is needed in order to lower the barriers for women to get more involved – coaching and officiating, active participation, leadership and governance and visibility.

The announcement also includes the setting up of a Women in Sport Steering Committee, which will be chaired by former Irish international rugby player Lynne Cantwell as chair.

Speaking at the launch of the new strategy, Cantwell said: “The new Women in Sport Policy aims to provide a blueprint for Sport Ireland on the organisation’s future work in the area of women in sport.

"Sport Ireland began an extensive review in 2018, which examined the current landscape of women in sport in Ireland, identifying any barriers to their participation in all areas of sport.

"Through the hosting of focus groups, gathering and analysing qualitative and quantitative research on women’s involvement in sport, identifying international best practice in the area of advancing involvement in sport, and consultation with key stakeholders on the barriers and opportunities, Sport Ireland has developed this policy which we feel will have a significant impact of the future of women’s sport in Ireland.

"Together with the new Women in Sport Steering Committee, I look forward to overseeing the implementation of this ambitious policy.”

To accompany the launch of the new strategy, Sport Ireland is re-launching the Women in Sport funding programme for national governing bodies and local sports partnerships.

In line with the increase announced following Budget 2019, the Women in Sport fund will increase to €2m annually, which will be committed to both funding for organisations as part of a competitive-bid process and Sport Ireland programmes at a national level.

Sport Ireland chair, Kieran Mulvey, added: “While today is a very significant day, it is only another step towards where we want to be. In that way this policy is not so much the end as it is a means to an end.

"The policy will be underpinned by the commitment of resources – both financial and personnel. In that regard, today we are also re-launching the Sport Ireland Women in Sport funding programme.

"This will accompany the significant investment by Sport Ireland in women’s sport across the board through other established funding streams for organisations and athletes.”

Sport Ireland  Women in Sport Policy 
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