International Women’s Day is now over 100 years old and this year’s theme is ‘Choose To Challenge’. The day celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women all around the world. At Sheffield & Hallamshire County FA, we wanted to play our part and ‘Choose to Challenge’ the gender inequality still seen in football today.
This year, on 5 December, marks 100 years since the FA famously banned football for women, saying that no clubs could let women’s teams play in their grounds. Only one year earlier, in 1920, Dick Kerr Ladies, a factory team from Preston, pulled in a crowd of 53,000 at Everton’s Goodison Park. And that wasn’t all, there were thousands more fans locked out.
Almost 50 years later, the ban was lifted, but it has had a massive impact on the female side of the game that we can still see today. We believe that impact can be seen in our local area too, and we wanted to bring a local feel to this International Women’s Day. You’ll find our social media filled throughout the day with videos of women and men involved in the female game and their highs and lows in terms of discrimination, barriers and having to really fight for the right to play.
With the Women’s European Championships coming to Sheffield and Rotherham in 2022, there will be an even greater focus and resource into women’s football. If you’re inspired through International Women’s Day and the stories that you’ve heard, and want to #ChooseToChallenge through playing the game, volunteering in the game or leading in the game, then you can get in touch with us.
You can also get involved with the Female Friendly Club Training which will be running on the 10th and 11th March.
Also, we’d love to see your #ChooseToChallenge photos with a sentence on how you are committing to challenge gender inequality within the game. You can share these with us on Twitter or Facebook.