International Women’s Day 2023 – Embracing Equity

International Women's Day 2023 - Embracing Equity

International Women’s Day 2023 is on 8 March and the theme is #EmbraceEquity.

It all sounds rather inspiring:

Imagine a gender equal world. A world free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination. A world that’s diverse, equitable, and inclusive. A world where difference is valued and celebrated. Together we can forge women’s equality. Collectively we can all #EmbraceEquity.

Celebrate women’s achievement. Raise awareness about discrimination. Take action to drive gender parity.

IWD belongs to everyone, everywhere. Inclusion means all IWD action is valid.

The Ann Craft Trust’s Safeguarding Adults in Sport Team is comprised of women with a variety of backgrounds and experiences.

Here are some of our thoughts on IWD 2023.

Emma Gibson, Head of Sport

I was pleased to join the Ann Craft Trust last year in order to join my two main passions in sport together: Inclusion in its widest sense, and safeguarding.

I have always believed that people have to feel safe and included to be able to play and enjoy their sport. It is for all of us in the sport family to do our part to achieve that.

Sports equity to me is about recognising that everyone can play an active part in sport. I genuinely believe there is a sport or activity for everyone. You just may not have found it yet.

I have been proud to play sport alongside my daughters for a number of years. I have also enjoyed the challenge of playing in sports teams with my husband and my dad!

Having played and enjoyed a number of different sports, I am now facing a different challenge as I dip my toe into officiating. I don’t know how it will pan out, but I am getting some welcome support locally! More female umpires are a positive for women’s cricket. So I’ll see how well I do, how confident I become and whether I get the same buzz out of playing a different role in sport.

I encourage everyone in sport to celebrate your achievements, however small. Get involved if you want to, whether playing, officiating or volunteering in other roles. Let’s collectively keep doing our best to welcome people and further encourage the safe inclusion of sport for all.

Nicola Dean, Safeguarding Adults in Sport Manager and Team Link to Active Partnerships

We were struck by the IWD mission – To forge inclusive work cultures where women’s careers thrive and their achievements are celebrated.

Coming from a background of Social Care and the Voluntary Sector, I am used to working in all women teams, so the Ann Craft Trust Safeguarding Adults in Sport team feels very familiar.

What shines for me about this team is the respect we have for each other’s skills, abilities and knowledge. I think we have a commitment to celebrating each other’s work and offering support when we feel it is needed, often before someone asks. And when they do ask for help, we volunteer without expecting anything back. We don’t always agree. However, we can usually come to a consensus based on information rather than on force of personality.

The area that I think we need to look at in the wider organisation is how we advertise recruitment opportunities to attract people from different backgrounds. We are obviously very successful in attracting women. Yet we do not reflect society, particularly in terms of disability and ethnicity. It would be good to have a more diverse workforce.

Cath Sykes, Safeguarding Adults Manager for the Sport and Activity Sector

The question for me is always How.

How can we create an inclusive culture; How can we equal the balance and how can we make change happen so that women are enabled to thrive and achieve?

I guess for me it is about three key things:

– Leading by example and treating others as you would want to be treated yourself.

– Listening to our own thoughts, feelings and values and having the conviction to speak up when there is that feeling of inequality or unfairness.

– Learning from others. There are success stories out there – let’s share them!

Listen, Learn, Lead are the three pillars of our #SaferCultureSaferSport campaign.

Learn more about our campaign to create safer cultures in sport