Scottish Government Ministers have been meeting the people behind the projects which encourage more women and girls to engage in sport and physical activity as part of Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week.
This year the Week focuses on inclusivity, where organisations and projects across the country are providing opportunities for all to participate, as well as removing barriers which discourage women and girls from participating in sport and physical activity.
Throughout the week, women and girls across Scotland are invited to engage in any form of physical activity, enabling them to become part of an ‘unofficial’ nationwide team line up.
Deputy First Minister, Shona Robison MSP, was at Dundee Rugby Club to hear about the work being done by the club, as part of Caird Park Community Sport Hub, to develop the women’s game.
The women’s section of the club, Dundee Valkyries has grown significantly over the last few years, and they can now field two women's teams. The Minister watched a training session and had the opportunity to talk to the participants and coaches about the women’s game and the wider development of sport in the local community.
Deputy First Minister Shona Robison said:
“I was delighted to join Dundee Rugby Club during Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week to hear about the growth of their women’s game and the impact this has had on sport in the wider community.
“I met with participants from the women’s section of the club, Dundee Valkyries, and heard how the club create a welcoming and inclusive environment for participants as one of the first rugby clubs in Scotland to run two women's teams.”
The Minister also met representatives from sportscotland, Leisure and Culture Dundee, Dundee Rugby Club, and Caird Park Community Sport Hub.
Judy Dobbie, Director of Leisure & Culture Dundee, said:
"Our work with Dundee Rugby Club through Caird Park Community Sports Hub is an excellent example of how we work with partners to support and empower local people to improve sport and physical activity in our communities. Collaborating in this way to facilitate and deliver quality opportunities for girls and women to participate in sports can be life-changing. These opportunities create new friendships, improve mental and physical health and wellbeing and create an environment where girls and women can reach their full potential in sport.”
Jenny Ferguson from the Dundee Valkyries explained how joining the club has positively impacted on her life:
"I joined the Valkyries this summer and since then I have loved being part of a sports team, it's made fitness fun. I have met some great people and it's given me confidence to try things I never thought I would do."
Now in its seventh year, Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week aims to reach as many women and girls across Scotland as possible. The Week is designed to show women that whatever their age, location or life stage, there is a sport or physical activity that’s right for them. Through this campaign, the hope is to help to boost their physical, mental and social health and for all women and girls to feel the benefits of being active.
The Week also provides an opportunity to promote the visibility and participation of women and girls as role models in sport and physical activity to help break down barriers and inspire women and girls to be active.
Chief Executive of sportscotland, Forbes Dunlop, said:
“Women and Girls in Sport Week is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the great work being delivered across the sporting system to encourage more women and girls to become physically active.
“This year has seen phenomenal performances from female athletes on the world stage, creating some incredible role models for young women and girls. But we know that there are equally inspirational role models in communities right across Scotland who work so hard to create opportunities for women and girls to find their own journey in sport, this week provides a great opportunity to celebrate their vital contribution.”
Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week takes place from 2 – 8 October 2023