Canadian Women & Sport Announces Pilot Partners for Game On Sport Leadership Program

Canadian Women & Sport is excited to partner with organizations from across the country to pilot Game On – an 8-week sport leadership program to help keep girls in the game.

As many as 62% of Canadian girls are not participating in any kind of sport and across adolescence, 1 in 3 girls drops out of sport compared to 1 in 10 boys. When girls drop out of sport during adolescence, they miss out on the many benefits that would set them up for long-term health, well-being, academic and career success (Canadian Women & Sport, The Rally Report, (2020)).

Quality of their sport experience is a top barrier reported by girls. To improve quality of sport, Game On combines sport programming with leadership training opportunities to produce higher levels of engagement in physical activity and value for sport, belongingness, enjoyment, and self-efficacy among participants (Canadian Women & Sport, Actively Engaging, 2012). The Game On program helps coaches create safe, welcoming and inclusive sport and physical activity spaces for girls.

Participating clubs include:

“Rock Girls’ and Women’s Rugby is excited to participate in a program that will guide our coaches in leading activities which address the various hurdles facing a young woman in sport.” says Roxanne Butler, Head Coach Rock Women’s Development Rugby. “We are motivated to build bonds amongst teammates who typically wouldn’t get the opportunity to know each other and leverage those relationships to increase self-esteem and confidence.”

Canadian Women & Sport is partnering with the University of Toronto to evaluate the effectiveness of the program for coaches and participants. The pilot runs from May to July 2021. Following a successful pilot program, Canadian Women & Sport looks forward to launching Game On more broadly to the sport and physical activity sector.

This project is funded by the Government of Canada through the Sport Canada Innovation Fund.

About Game On

Game On was first piloted in partnership with MLSE (Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment) Launchpad in early 2019.  As a result, 88% of the participants reported that the program increased their desire and ability to be a leader in sport. Canadian Women & Sport is currently exploring opportunities to test the program in different sport environments, with the intention of building a scalable curriculum that can be implemented in clubs across Canada.