Boost for women in high performance sport

An additional $2.7 million has been announced for the Government Strategy for Women and Girls in Sport and Active Recreation on the first anniversary of the strategy’s launch.

Sport and Recreation Minister Grant Robertson gave the opening address to the first Sport NZ Women + Girls Summit in Wellington today, where he announced the new funding will deliver a Women in High Performance Sport pilot project through to June 2021.

“Female athletes make a massive contribution to New Zealand’s success on the international sporting stage, yet women remain significantly under-represented in high performance leadership and coaching roles.

“Across the 26 sports in which High Performance Sport NZ invest, there are only three women currently appointed to high performance Director or Manager positions, and since 2015 only 19 percent of the 184 carded coaches have been women.

“The $2.7 million being invested through High Performance Sport NZ seeks to change this by creating the right environment and opportunities for far greater representation of women in high performance leadership and coaching positions,” Grant Robertson says.

“A lot has been achieved since the launch of the strategy a year ago, including two new contestable funds, the delivery of the women in leadership programme and setting the Board Gender Diversity target for the sport and recreation sector, but there is much more to do.

As a sector, and as a Government, we need to keep leading positive conversations around gender equity in sport, while also continuing to challenge poor behaviours and attitudes,” Grant Robertson says.

High Performance Sport NZ’s Women in High Performance Sport pilot project will be delivered through three main streams:

  • A Women in High Performance Sport Residency Fund that will establish a cohort of highly capable women leaders and coaches through providing fixed term Residency positions in national sporting organisations.
  • A High Performance Sport Breakthrough Coaching Program for Women that will develop a talent pool of future HP coaches.
  • Working in partnership with national sporting organisations to create sustainable and inclusive HP sport environments.