What do an up-and-coming batter, a footy player and a soccer forward have in common?
Well, they’re all women. Women who are passionate about playing sport and creating opportunities for others to do so.
This week, WA Cricket was proud to partner with Reclink to host a special event enabling marginalised and vulnerable women to try sport in a safe, encouraging, and fun environment.
Dozens of participants were able to learn some of the basic skills of cricket and football in a non-threatening environment, where they were shown the ropes by female players from WA Cricket, East Fremantle Women’s Football Club and Perth Glory.
“Particularly for women from vulnerable backgrounds, we’ve seen how crucial it is to have sport and recreation involved,” said Caitlin Spencer, WA Cricket Female Engagement and Volunteers Specialist.
“Involvement in sport is important not only for mental health and wellbeing but also the social outcomes and sense of belonging you gain,” she said.
Reclink WA State Manager Simone Ireland said the event was designed to meet women wherever they are on their life journey.
“Our aim is to introduce women to these sports in a welcoming way, with no fear of judgment or having to commit to a long-term program,” Simone said.
The event was carefully designed to remove some of the known barriers preventing women from joining sport – the day was free, in a central location at the iconic WACA ground, lunch was provided, and there was a focus on inclusion and having a go.
Guest speakers included family domestic violence survivor Joy Wells who shared her inspiring personal journey, as well as EFWFC Head of Football Nikki Harwood and WA Cricket CEO Christina Matthews.
“The event was another great way to show how sport can bring people together no matter their experience or circumstances”, Christina said.
The inaugural event organised by Reclink was made possible by WA Cricket, East Fremantle Women’s Football Club, ASeTTs, Act Belong Commit, Stephen Michael Foundation, City of Perth, Women in Sport WA, Legal Aid WA, Neami National, Fremantle Dockers Purple Hands Foundation and SEDA.