Celebrating Volunteers in Sport: The Impact of Gippsland Soccer League's Female Football Sub-Committee

As National Volunteer Week approaches, it is the perfect time to highlight the incredible efforts of volunteers within our community. One shining example of dedication and teamwork is the Gippsland Soccer League’s Female Football Sub-Committee. Formed in late 2023, this group of passionate volunteers has been instrumental in fostering greater participation and inclusivity in women’s soccer throughout the region.

A Response to Growing Interest

Inspired by the monumental success of the FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Matildas, the Female Football Sub-Committee was established to harness the growing interest in soccer among women and girls. The surge in enthusiasm prompted a diverse group of volunteers, each hailing from different walks of life and various clubs within the Gippsland Soccer League (GSL), to come together with a common goal: to create more participation opportunities for women and girls in soccer.

Growing Stronger Together

Meeting monthly, the sub-committee identified a critical need to support young girls players, particularly in the Under 13 age group, where many girls begin to disengage from sports. Their solution was to establish an Under 13 girls-only competition, aiming to provide a friendly and supportive environment for these players. This initiative culminated in the successful launch of the junior girls-only competition on April 21, 2024, with five out of eight clubs forming teams. The sub-committee continues to work towards encouraging more women and girls to join the sport.

Female Football Week: A Community Triumph

The highlight of their efforts was the Female Football Week event, held on May 11th at the Korumburra City Soccer Club. Part of a nationwide initiative running from May 3rd to May 12th, the event celebrated Australian women’s football under the campaign theme #WeRise. This theme encapsulates the spirit of unity and community in women’s football, both on and off the field.

The day’s activities were a testament to the sub-committee’s hard work and dedication. The event featured round 4 of the Under 13 girls matches, a senior women’s match played under lights, and a soccer clinic open to all. The presence of Matilda star Alexandra “Chids” Chidiac added a special touch, as she moved between groups, helping the girls with their skills and inspiring them with her journey.

Beth, one of the passionate volunteers, shared her reflections on the day: “Over 90 junior players from across the region arrived to participate in the clinics. The atmosphere was electric as girls took over all corners of the multiple pitches set up. Alex Chidiac’s presence was the cherry on top, providing unforgettable memories for all involved.”

The Power of Volunteers

None of this would have been possible without the tireless efforts of the Female Football Sub-Committee volunteers. Their commitment to fostering an inclusive and supportive environment for young female soccer players has already made a significant impact. Looking ahead, they are eager to continue their work and encourage more members of the community to get involved.

As we celebrate National Volunteer Week, we honour these volunteers who have given their time, energy, and passion to make a difference. Their efforts exemplify the true spirit of volunteerism, showing how collective action can lead to positive change and a brighter future for women’s football in Gippsland.

Need more information?

GippSport acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land on which we live and work, The Bunurong Peoples, Gunaikurnai Peoples and other traditional owner groups of the Gippsland/East Gippsland Region.  We recognise their ongoing connection to the land, waters and community, and pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging and the ongoing living culture of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people.

GippSport is committed to making a positive contribution to the wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and working in solidarity towards reconciliation.

GippSport – Gippsland Sports Assembly Inc.
PO Box 741, Traralgon, VIC, Australia 3844
Traralgon Sports Stadium, Catterick Cres, Traralgon