What Men Can Do

As a man you have an important role to play in supporting the participation and leadership of girls and women in sport and physical activity. Be a champion for girls and women take action through one or more of the practical ideas below

  1. Speak Up! – Be vocal about equitable access for girls and women with respect to programs, facilities, equipment, quality coaching, leadership opportunities, media coverage, etc. Question policies and practices that limit girls’ and women’s participation and leadership in sport and physical activity, and throughout Canadian society.
  2. Celebrate Women Athletes – Make attending or watching a women’s sport event an event for the whole family. Attend or tune in to a professional game or national, provincial or territorial championship; or cheer on a local university, college or high school team.
  3. Train And Certify Women Coaches And Officials – Provide women-only coaching and officiating courses, and promote other training and certification opportunities in your community and sport. Increase gender equity on the field by supporting the hiring/selection of women as coaches and officials. Connect women with the resources and opportunities available through the Coaching Association of Canada’s Women in Coaching Program and National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP).
  4. Recruit Women Leaders – Ensure there are many female voices representing the interests of both women and men on any Boards with which you are involved. CAAWS’ Women on Boards: A Guide to Getting Involved provides practical information for women, and details the organizational benefits of women’s involvement. Host a CAAWS Women and Leadership Workshop to increase the skills, networks and confidence of women colleagues.
  5. Pay-It-Forward and Mentor – Invite women colleagues to attend meetings and events to build their skills, expand their networks, and increase their knowledge of your organization and the sport and physical activity system. Share your experiences, discuss their challenges, and address systemic barriers that may be limiting their involvement. “A lot of people have gone further than they thought they could, because someone else thought they could” (unknown).
  6. Invite Women to share their expertise and experiences at conferences and events as keynote speakers and session presenters, and facilitate introductions of women to members of your network to help them connect.
  7. Nominate Women Leaders for awards and recognition programs such as the annual CAAWS Most Influential Women in Sport and Physical Activity List (it is a quick and easy process); the YWCA’s Women of Distinction Awards; community service awards; or community, provincial/territorial, national and international sport and physical activity awards. Nominate women athletes, coaches, officials and builders for Sport Halls of Fame.
  8. Communicate Opportunities – Share information about upcoming training events, funding opportunities, and new resources to ensure women are “in the loop” on ways to advance their career, secure financial resources for an important project, and are up to date with advancements in the field. Tap into funds dedicated to supporting girls and women as participants and leaders, such as the CAAWS WISE Fund; and ProMOTION Plus’ Victoria Awards and Grants (in BC). Utilize other available funding to support efforts to engage girls and women, through organizations such as True Sport FoundationHeart & Stroke Foundation; and Canadian Heritage.
  9. Educate Yourself And Others – Know the facts about the barriers girls and women confront, and their experiences as participants and leaders. Attend a CAAWS workshop or download one of CAAWS’ practical resources to find out more and take action.
  10. Promote The CAAWS WOMEN AND LEADERSHIP NETWORK to women leaders in your community. The Network is an online community where women leaders can connect, build their skills, share ideas, discuss issues, find solutions, and take action. Membership provides access to information, resources and advice from women leaders in sport and physical activity in Canada.

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