In the heart of Perth, an event unfolded celebrating the indomitable spirit of women in sport. "The Matildas Effect" Networking Event, a collaboration between Women Onside and Women in Sport WA, delved deep into the dynamic world of women's football. And, as the night unfolded, it did not disappoint.
In the day before the Asian Olympic Qualifiers, this exciting event brought together football enthusiasts, advocates, and supporters from various corners of the WA sporting landscape. It was more than just a gathering; it was a celebration and an ode to the powerhouses known as the Matildas.
The event kicked off with keynote presentations from Women Onside Chair, Kerry Harris and Women in Sport WA founder, Karen Hennessy, on the power of visibility of women in sport through record breaking broadcast number and attendances at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand™ engaging roles models and positive images on social media.
We heard from Rebel Sport Regional Manager, Cathy Ellis, about their visionary managing director who saw the opportunities presented by the announcement of Aus and NZ as the co-hosts of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand™ and invested early into Matildas merchandise. In addition, the event highlighted the significant partnership between Football Australia and Rebel Sport, a collaboration that has been instrumental in promoting Matildas merchandise and furthering the cause of women's football
The evening was rounded out with an interview with Junior Matildas Sport Scientist and WO Onside Mentoring mentee, Mikayla Lyons, talking about the importance of research and data being integral components in high performance programs, including the importance of understanding athlete menstrual cycles and integrating this knowledge into training programs, underlining the commitment to optimising performance.
"The Matildas Effect" Networking Event was a testament to the power of unity and the impact of strong female role models. It showcased the incredible journey of the Matildas and how their influence transcends the football pitch. The event was a celebration of the present and a promise for a brighter, more inclusive future for women in sports.
Attendees left with a deeper understanding of the "Matildas Effect" and its broader impact for women’s sport and women in sport. It was a reminder that when people come together to celebrate and support women in sport, we're not just witnessing a game; we're witnessing a transformation, a movement, and a legacy in the making. The Matildas have had their effect, and it's a beautiful one.