Why is there a need to advance gender justice in sports?

For women and girls, sport is a powerful tool to challenge gender norms and stereotypes, to regain ownership of their bodies, to experience joy, freedom and pleasure, to rebuild their lives after trauma, to further develop skills that are transferable to the work environment, to find a safe network and a sense of meaning and purpose, to express their talent and passion professionally.

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However...

sports have traditionally privileged boys and men over girls and women while intersectional discriminations based on gender, sex, race, class, sexuality, etc. continue to limit access to sport for many. While significant gains have been made in women’s sport in recent years, they are now under considerable threat, and much remains to be done before sport becomes truly inclusive and equitable.

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Why now?

 

In 2020, Covid-19 threatens to erase the momentum and unprecedented attention women’s sport has gained around the world.

 

From the elite to the grassroots, the gaps between women and men, girls and boys are set to widen.

 

Women and girls will, again, lose access to the benefits of sport.

 Girls and women at the centre 
 of the Covid-19 pandemic 

Under lockdown measures, girls and women are at significantly increased risk of:

  • Physical and sexual violence

  • Unplanned pregnancies

  • Child marriage

  • School drop-out

As schools close and sports programmes stop, girls and women lose access to their safe spaces, mentors and support networks.

If activities are shifted online, girls and young women may be less likely to engage due to the priority of care work, household chores and due to the digital divide.

Girls and women are uniquely impacted:

  • Erasure of joy, freedom and pleasure

  • Limited physical activity or movement

  • Social isolation

  • Violence and trauma

  • Lack of peer support networks

  • Deteriorating financial situations
    of families

In combination, these factors will challenge girls’ and women’s mental health and threaten their educational and economic rights.

* This fund actively looks to support all cis, trans, non-binary and all other underrepresented groups and communities such as black, indigenous, mestizas, people of colour, LGBTIQ+, refugees, and migrant girls and women with or without disabilities

The ONSIDE Fund is part of the broader ONSIDE Initiative which envisions a world where all girls and women* exercise their right to play.

* ONSIDE actively looks to support all cis, trans, non-binary and all other underrepresented groups and communities such as black, indigenous, mestizas, people of colour, LGBTIQ+, refugees, and migrant girls and women with or without disabilities.

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