WomenSport International Newsletter
Global Voice of Research-Based Advocacy for Women in Sport
Message from the President: December 2023
2023 was a transitional year for WomenSport International (WSI). Our new Board of Directors hails from nine different countries and represents all five regions of the globe. It’s laden with expertise and experience in improving sports opportunities for women and girls. Our first 2024 initiative will be to review and develop a new four-year WSI strategy that focuses on member-driven priorities and issues. It will be ready by the end of March. Please feel free to email your suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
WSI continues to prioritize the Global Observatory for Gender Equality and Sport (GO), in partnership with the International Association of Physical Education and Sport for Girls and Women (IAPESGW) and the International Working Group for Women in Sport (IWG). We were invited to attend a planning meeting co-hosted by the GO and UNESCO, entitled “Monitoring Progress on Gender Equality, Girls, Women, Physical Education, Physical Activity and Sport” (Nov. 27-29). Collectively, we advised the GO secretariat about indicators that could be used internationally to monitor the status of gender equality at all levels, helping governments and institutions reach their goals.
Safeguarding and reducing violence against girls and women in sport is a key WSI focus. This year, Board members Kari Fasting and Margo Mountjoy were part of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) working group, creating a statement on safeguarding. When finalized, it will appear on the IOC web site. This is particularly timely as the 2024 Olympics are coming up in Paris, France (July 26-August 11).The statement also dovetails with the IOC’s $10 million USD commitment toward safeguarding over the next three years.
WSI is also promoting the principles of UNESCO’s new Fit for Life program. We have provided advice on its Theory of Change and look forward to seeing how the data reflects Fit for Life’s impact in the years to come.
2023 was another special year for Kari Fasting and Carole Oglesby, who both earned recognition for their achievements. Kari got the King of Norway’s highest citizen award for her contributions to improving women’s lives in Norway and worldwide. Carole was honoured by the Council of Europe at for her lifetime contribution to women’s sports during November’s Gender Equality in Sport Conference in Spain.
Overall, it was an interesting year for women in sport. The FIFA Women’s World Cup ended with an unwanted kiss witnessed by the world, including strong young women fighting for equitable pay and access to sport. It shows we still have work to do to improve the sport ecosystem.
WSI thanks Concept2 for their fundraising efforts as we strive to build a safer, more accessible sport sector. We are also happy to acknowledge Deloitte’s support.
On behalf of the WSI Board, I wish you a safe and happy holiday season, with hopes for peace in wartorn areas in 2024. Let us keep on using sport to make the world a better place.
President, WomenSport International
As 2023 wraps up, WSI would like to thank all our members for their efforts and advocacy worldwide. Click here to review our work and related news on our website.
On December 1, WSI hosted a webinar on the WE League (Women Empowerment Women’s Soccer League) in Japan. Ms. Miyuki Kobayashi shared the history and the strategies that this league has implemented to empower women in Japan and beyond. If you missed this inspiring and informative webinar, click here to view the recording.
WSI joined UN Women for the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence project. We posted messages from WSI board members and other members on our Facebook, X, and LinkedIn pages. This is an annual international campaign that kicked off on November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and ran until December 10, Human Rights Day (UN Women). Please join us for the movement and advocate for eliminating gender-based violence in sport and beyond.
Join WSI as a member if you have not already done so! Benefits include:
Access to an international network of experts for sharing research, information, ideas, and best practices
Communication on research-based strategies to enhance gender equity in sport
Support to enhance opportunities and effect change for women in sport and physical activity
- Invitation to WSI functions at major international conferences
Dr. Kanae Haneishi
Secretary General, WomenSport International
2024 International Women’s Sports Calendar: Circle These Dates
Here are just a few of the major competitions – from new leagues to international tournaments – that you won’t want to miss next year. Use our list as inspiration to catch other women’s sports events as well.
Professional Women’s Hockey League (debuts January 1, Toronto, Canada)
2024 World Indoors Athletic Championships (March 1-3, Glasgow, Scotland)
2024 NWSL Challenge Cup (March 15, Gotham FC vs. San Diego Wave, USA)
2024 BKT Tires World Women’s Curling Championship (March 16-24, Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada)
2024 IIHF Women’s World Hockey Championship (April 3-14, Utica, New York, USA)
2024 FIM Women’s Motorcycling World Championship (debuts June 14-16, Emilia Romagna, Italy)
2024 WNBA All-Star Weekend (July 19-20, Phoenix, Arizona, USA)
2024 Summer Olympics (July 26-August 11, Paris, France)
2024 Tour de France Femmes (August 12-18, various locations, France)
2024 IBSA Women’s Blind Football World Grand Prix (October 17-26, Cordoba, Argentina)
Events compiled by WSI newsletter chief editor Lucas Aykroyd
In the Media
LPGA Foundation: Program Coordinator
University of Florida: Director of Women’s Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Sports Surgeon
West Ham FC: Women's Team Head of Sports Science
Media links and professional opportunities compiled by WSI chief editor Lucas Aykroyd