Driving up participation levels of women and girls will be an important part of a £100 million push which doubles Scotland’s sport and active living budget by the end of the current Parliament.
Preparations are also underway for a Scottish sport media summit aimed at exploring, through a collaborative approach, ways to increase visibility and coverage of women’s sport across all platforms.
The fifth annual Scottish Women and Girls in Sport week kicks off today with a series of events planned over the coming seven days.
Sports minister Maree Todd will visit Dingwall Academy today to see for herself some of the activities being delivered and meet girls getting active, while other Scottish Government ministers will also take part in events during the course of the week.
Ms Todd said: “More participation and visibility of girls and women in sport is a priority for this Government. By doubling investment to £100 million in sport and active living we hope to address issues around equality of access.
“Our plans for a Scottish sport media summit will also address important issues around improving and increasing the visibility of women’s sports, athletes and participation.
“We know the positive impact which sport and being active has on physical, mental and social health across all stages in life. This has never been more important after our experience of the pandemic and the dangers of loneliness and isolation.
“This annual dedicated week provides an opportunity to increase visibility and participation of women and girls in sport and physical activity. It’s really important that we shine a spotlight on how girls and women are building new or maintaining healthy habits for their wellbeing. I would encourage everyone to get involved no matter the activity or the level.”
The additional investment will benefit the wider sporting system and be delivered in partnership with sportscotland to help rebuild capacity within the sector as we continue to recover from the pandemic. It will focus on breaking down barriers to participation and ensure that more people, including women and girls, can enjoy active lives, while improving physical, mental and social health.
Ms Todd will participate in a question and answer session to mark the launch of the week on social media today.
A short film to highlight role models across Scotland who inspire active lifestyles, entitled Hero Piece, will also be released setting out how sport and physical activity has impacted them.
There will also be a panel conversation chaired by Professor Linda Bauld, Chief Social Policy Adviser to the Scottish Government, and featuring Scotland and Arsenal footballer Jen Beattie to discuss the role of sport and physical activity in supporting women’s health and wellbeing.
sportscotland’s Active Girl Day initiative has already been taking place throughout this month providing schools and sports clubs with the flexibility to select any day in October to celebrate the work going into girls’ sport, the progress around girls’ participation, and the role models making it happen.
Scottish Women and Girls in Sport week runs from Monday October 25th-31st.
The additional funding and plans for a media summit are set out here.