Special event celebrated International Women's Day in style

Celebrating success at #IWD2024 event

Special event celebrated International Women's Day in style

To mark International Women’s Day 2024, Berks & Bucks FA hosted an event to celebrate which took place on IWD itself, Friday 8th March, at the Select Car Leasing Stadium (Reading FC). 

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. Significant activity is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women's achievements or rally for women's equality.

We were delighted to welcome over 60 people on the evening from across Berks & Bucks. The attendees included players, referees, coaches, volunteers and parent/carers and the evening saw us celebrate female’s achievements plus the opportunity to network and engage and to talk about some of the barriers females face in the game.

A massive thank you to our special guests Nicole Farley, Academy Coach at West Ham United and Caroline Herman & Leanne Whittaker from All Yours Period Box.

@berksandbucksfa It was incredible to be joined at our #IWD2024 event by so many inspiring, dedicated and passionate women involved in football across our region. Thank you to everyone that came along and helped us uplift and celebrate the acheivements of women in the game, and huge thank you to our special guests for sharing their stories!   #berksandbucksfa #grassrootsfootball #grassrootsvolunteer #inclusion #footballyourway #internationalwomensday #celebrate #takeyourchance #inspireinclusion ♬ The Hustle - Van McCoy

Jess Painter, who has been a player for over 20 years and a referee for the past two, said, “I loved the energy in the room. Without even knowing what the event was going to involve, you could sense that every female was there for a similar reason. The mix between referees and coaches was good to see. As a referee (and a PE teacher by day) it was concerning to hear the issues that women are still facing in the current climate but empowering to hear how they have overcome it for their club. The evening demonstrated that we’re making steps in the right direction and that our gender does not define our footballing ability. There was a lot of powerful stories being shared!

Jess went on to add; “To be able to talk about the barrier females face in the game is so important. My job by day is a PE teacher and my role is to educate the next generation of male and female students that there are still barriers to participation. Whether that be gender, disability or access to provisions. I have taken two female teams to the finals of National and county competitions which is a highlight celebrated by our headteacher but still commented on by the students male counter parts.

"To ensure that the next generation display strong levels of equality, my pedagogical approach to teaching is to ensure that students are educated as a whole person and can appreciate ability rather than gender. It’s so important to highlight positive female role models in our game. There aren’t enough demonstrated in the media or spoken about in the streets. My school are proud that I represent a very some minority of female referees. But I’m also lucky that I work in a school that celebrate successes regardless of gender, something I aim to promote/encourage until the day I retire!”

We would like to thank everyone who attended the event and we look forward to continue to support females in football across Berks & Bucks. 

To find out more about upcoming events, please visit our dedicated page.

We will shortly be launching a new online platform for Females involved in Football to stay connected, network with each other and receive useful information/resources from BBFA & The FA.

Please complete this short survey to provide us with your details and will keep you updated on the launch of the new platform.

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