Girls Night In a Huge Night for All

May 30, 2018 at 4:20 PM

The following article was published in the online version of the Herald Sun newspaper.

Women’s Round a big step but business as usual at Doncaster

Hockey Victoria (HV) have for a number of years promoted the Women’s Round throughout the hockey community.  The Women’s Round is an opportunity to recognise the outstanding contribution Women and Girls make to this sport and the Doncaster Hockey Club certainly rallied to support the event.

Players wore PINK themes for home matches and trainings, took a table to HV Women’s and Girls Breakfast and plenty of fundraising for Breast Cancer Network Australia (BCNA).  But the highlight this year was the Girls Night In.

Operations Manager, Andrea Snow said the objective of this night was to ensure Doncaster’s young women felt right at home.  “We are aware that sporting Clubs are an ideal setting to foster safe, inclusive and respectful attitudes. Society places an enormous amount of pressure on us in relation to how we look. Through funding from Bendigo Bank’s  Community Enterprise Foundation, we were able to run this workshop, which challenged these ideals and values around body image and the impact this has on our sense of worth and willingness to participate in sport.  That’s what Girls Night In is aimed at.  Our objective is to; bridge the gaps between our junior girls and our senior players, underlining the importance of healthy relationships and mentors at the Club.  Actually, playing hockey is somewhere down the track" Snow said.

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Some of the 59 junior players working through team work with some of the Premier League players and coach

“Not only was Girls Night In itself really well received but the presentation by Bethany Knight from the Butterfly Foundation was really insightful.  Bethany talked about some simple things such as what it means to be athlete, how food and exercise impact our self-esteem, how our involvement in team sport with team mates and coaches impact us and how to put our body image into perspective.  These aren’t hockey skills development but every bit as important” Snow said.

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Junior girls exchanging ideas

Doncaster President, Sarah Gaskill, spoke highly of the Girls Night In.  “It was a terrific night, 59 of our junior girls came along and not only raved about the night, they took away some very useful tips about growing up if nothing else.  But that’s just what we do here at Doncaster.  Sure we love our hockey and I think we’ve got some excellent junior development programs but Girls Night In is more about creating a safe and inclusive culture” Gaskill said.

“Specifically, we want our junior girls to see that all the doors are wide open for them, not only is this a very good sporting club, this is part of a community that fully respects and recognises them.  We hope to run a similar event for our junior boys when it’s Men’s Round next month” Gaskill said.

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Special thanks to the Bendigo Bank for their huge support of an outstanding Girls Night In event

Doncaster does have quite a female profile across the Club.  Doncaster is the only club in Hockey Victoria that both the Premier League and Premier League Reserves teams are coached by a female.  40 percent of the Club Executive are females, 47% of junior coaches are females and the umpire coach is female. .  No doubt the hockey is good but the culture is every bit as good.

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