Since starting this project I’ve had lots of questions about what motivated it. I can probably pin-point the moment that the seed was planted. It was in June last year and out of curiosity, I decided to check out the Women’s AFL exhibition match at Etihad Stadium. To briefly contextualise, I was working for the Carlton Football Club at the time, and for anyone with their finger on the AFL pulse, you would know we were having a very average year. Football seasons can become a real grind when you’re working at a club that is under-achieving. Despite the potential for football overload, I decided to check out the women’s game between Melbourne and the Western Bulldogs.
Having never watched a game of women’s footy, I went in without expectation, but I was absolutely blown away by what I saw. It was skilful, fast, free-flowing and tough. Exactly how footy is meant to be played. Not only that, but looking around the 8,000-strong crowd, you could feel the sense of community, something that the AFL now sadly lacks. I remember thinking; ‘This is what footy is all about and more people need to experience it’.
Fast forward six months, with my Carlton experience behind me, Change Her Game has come into existence. For those with short attention spans (i.e. me), I’ll answer the ‘why’ and ‘how’ in point form:
1. I LOVE sport, I mean, I just love it. I have similar feelings about other things in life, like music and film, but you just can’t re-create the theatre of sport.
2. I figured that I couldn’t possibly be the only woman on earth who feels this way about sport. “Build it and they will come.”
3. I’m motivated by projects that I care about. My work has to come from the heart, otherwise it’s exactly that; work.
4. It’s 2015 and women are still seeking equality.
5. I mean, seriously, IT’S 2015!
6. I felt compelled to help female athletes share their stories, because the mainstream media just doesn’t do it.
7. There just shouldn’t be any barriers to women and girls participating, consuming and working in sport.
8. It can be really difficult for women in male-dominated environments like the AFL, and there’s no reason for it to be that way.
9. I want to prove that there is an audience for women’s sport and mainstream media needs to catch up.
10. Above all, if you want to see change in the world, sometimes you have to make things happen yourself. #ChangeHerGame