Media Release: This Girl Can 2023 launches an inclusive and inspirational program

12 Oct 2023
Healthy Community

Mullum Mullum Stadium was abuzz this month when two big names in women’s sport joined community members, sporting clubs and Council to launch This Girl Can Week 2023.

The event’s keynote speaker, Dr Shona Bass is recognised as a trailblazer for women's sports. Shona represented Australia in the inaugural 1979 Trans-Tasman Cup, playing for the team now known as the Matildas.

Shona was joined by AFL Richmond Tigers player, Courtney Jones. Courtney shared her journey to elite sport, having dreamt of being an AFL player since she was five.

“These remarkable women have overcome challenges and broken barriers to excel in their respective fields, and they're here to inspire you to do the same,” Manningham Mayor, Councillor Deirdre Diamante said.

The launch celebrated women's strength, resilience, and achievements and was followed by a week of free and low-cost sport and physical activities across Manningham, from 9 to 15 October.

The events were hosted by local sporting clubs and groups to provide a safe, friendly environment for women and girls to get active.

Through the This Girl Can campaign, VicHealth inspires and empowers people with the invitation to join in and get active regardless of their age, size, background, gender identity or ability.

Those who took part were supported and encouraged through a focus on how getting active could make them feel, rather than on what others think.

Manningham Council has again thrown its support behind This Girl Can and the campaign’s important mission to encourage diversity in sport and physical activity.

Cr Diamante said the unique program is about helping participants overcome fears and feelings about judgement, not being fit enough or not belonging.

“It can be a real challenge for many women to know how to join in and get started. This program has so much to offer. It provides a great way for our community to connect with our local clubs, neighbourhood houses and organisations,” Cr Diamante said.

“This is a week where we invite women to overcome any barriers to participation. With a welcoming and fun range of inspiring opportunities that encourage diversity in sports and physical activity.”

This Girl Can also celebrates and encourages women to get involved in a variety of ways, with solo workouts or the camaraderie of groups and teams, this program has it covered. This year’s program features a range of activities including soccer, karate, basketball, yoga and Zumba. 

More information about the 2023 This Girl Can Program:

This Girl Can - A week of inspiration | Manningham Council