Category Archives: Gender

How Vanuatu is using traditional island cricket to change and save women’s lives

Rachel Andrew is one of the leading cricketers in an island nation famous for its stunning beaches. She has scored more runs for the women’s national team than anyone else and averages an impressive 11.50 with the ball.

Cricket is her passion, as it is for many women in Vanuatu – an archipelago across the Coral Sea from Australia, whose population of 307,000 is roughly the same as Nottingham. Its women’s T20 team ranks 28th in the world, making it probably the country’s most successful sporting side.

Despite that, traditional values have created barriers that have prevented many of Vanuatu’s ‘mamas’ from playing sport – but the Vanuatu Cricket Association (VCA) is trying to change that.

“I heard some people saying ‘mamas, they belong in the kitchen, clean the house, looking after the kids’, but no – it’s wrong,” said Andrew.

“We’ve got to help each other and promote gender equality. Let them know they have the right to enjoy themselves out there in sports or any activities.” More

Unlocked: 35 female sports stars join charity programme to increase diversity in sport

Thirty-five leading sportswomen have joined a charity programme to tackle the lack of diversity across sport.

Footballers Nikita Parris and Caroline Weir and five-time Paralympic champion Hannah Cockcroft are among those who have joined ‘Unlocked’, which has been set up by the Women’s Sport Trust.

The athletes share experiences and work with industry experts to help tackle issues relating to women in sport.

In total, 27 different sports are represented by the group.

“It has been a challenging year for many but as we come out of Covid-19 there is no better time to turbo-charge our effort and continue to unlock the value of women’s sport,” said Tammy Parlour, co-founder of the Women’s Sport Trust.

“We believe the best way to do this is by supporting these elite women and connecting them together.

“Individually they are strong advocates for change but together they are unstoppable.” More

The Netflix show putting the spotlight on menopause

Popular culture is generally associated with youth. But a new Netflix series that has a 49-year-old female lead, fighting the ravages of middle age, is being hailed for putting the spotlight on women’s lifelong battle with their own bodies.

In one scene of Bombay Begums, Rani, played by Bollywood star-turned-filmmaker Pooja Bhatt, abruptly walks out of a board meeting.

While her colleagues try to figure out why, the camera finds her in the bathroom, splashing cold water on her face, trying to dry her armpits under the hand dryer.

“Most people said they thought she was having a heart-attack,” says Namita Bhandare, gender editor for news website Article 14, “but I knew exactly what was happening.”

What was happening to Rani was menopause. More

Meryl Streep says boardroom inequality contributed to Hollywood sex scandal

Meryl Streep has said sexual harassment wouldn’t have been tolerated in Hollywood if there were more women on the boards of entertainment companies.

The star is getting together with other well-known actresses to demand equal representation in boardrooms.

She said balanced boards wouldn’t have approved pay-offs like those given to some of Harvey Weinstein’s accusers.

“If the boards of the company were half female, there wouldn’t ever have been pay-offs to anybody,” Streep said.  More

Women’s Super League: Barclays agree multi-million sponsorship deal

Chelsea Women

Barclays is to become the Women’s Super League first ever title sponsor, in a deal the Football Association has called “the biggest ever investment in UK women’s sport by a brand”.

The three-year partnership, understood to be worth in excess of £10m, will start from next season.

The competition will be rebranded the Barclays FA Women’s Super League and include a prize-money pot of £500,000.

Previously, WSL winners have not been awarded any official prize money.

“It’s a real landmark moment in the development of the women’s game,” the FA’s director of the women’s professional game Kelly Simmons told BBC Sport.

“We obviously want to get more fans and more revenue behind the game, making sure it’s secure and sustainable for the future.

“But also the investment in schools makes sure lots of girls get the chance to play football, which is our pipeline for the future.” More

Lily Parr: Plans for first statue of women’s football star

The Dick Kerr Ladies team

One of the first stars of English women’s football is to be immortalised with a life-sized statue.

The sculpture of Lily Parr, who played professionally in the 1920s, will be unveiled at the National Football Museum in Manchester in June.

Parr, who died in 1978 aged 73, was the first woman to feature in the museum’s Football Hall of Fame in 2002.

A spokeswoman for the Football Association said: “She deserves recognition as a true pioneer.”

She added: “It’s only fitting that she takes her place alongside other football legends and becomes the first woman to be celebrated with a statue in her honour.” More

Gabby Logan: ‘Involve men in menopause discussion’

TV presenter Gabby Logan has encouraged men to be included in the discussion around menopause so they have more of an “understanding” towards women.

The BBC Sport host, 47, told the Women’s Health Going For Goal podcast she had been unprepared for the impact the menopause had on her.

She said: “Men work alongside women, men are married to women, and I think men also need to know what’s going on because we need to have that empathy and understanding of what’s happening to our partners, our friends.”

Logan said “more people are talking about” the effects and stages of the menopause now. More

Rachael Blackmore: Jockey reflects on historic Cheltenham win with Honeysuckle

Jockey Rachael Blackmore said she hoped her historic triumph might inspire others after winning the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham on Honeysuckle.

She is the first woman to ride the winner of Tuesday’s championship race.

“There is no deal about being a female jockey anymore. If you want to be a jockey you can be a jockey, drive on,” said Irish rider Blackmore, 31.

“To young people, if you want to do something go and do it. For me standing here right now, anything can happen.”

Honeysuckle’s trainer Henry de Bromhead hailed the combination of rider and horse – the unbeaten mare was clocking up her 11th successive victory.

“Rachael is a brilliant rider on any horse and Honeysuckle is just a brilliant horse. The combination is deadly – it’s the perfect storm,” he said. More

Hollie Davidson and Joy Neville to undertake referee and TMO roles at Munster-Benetton game

Scotland’s Hollie Davidson will referee her first top-tier men’s game on Friday as Munster host Benetton, with Joy Neville the television match official.

Davidson, 28, was scheduled to referee European Challenge Cup and Pro14 games in January in February, only for both matches to be postponed.

Neville’s presence will make it the first time a top-tier men’s game has had both a female referee and TMO.

Irishwoman Neville refereed her first Pro14 game in February 2018.

Davidson, who became Scotland’s first female professional referee in 2017, follows in the footsteps of Neville in becoming the second woman to take charge of a Pro14 fixture. More

International Women’s Day 2021

Marked annually on 8 March, International Women’s Day (IWD) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity at home, in the workplace and within wider society.

The theme for 2021 is #ChooseToChallenge. We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. We can all choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements. Collectively, we can all help create an inclusive world.

Find out more about International Women’s Day at Greenwich, including stories celebrating women from across the university, events and our latest updates.