Government of Canada announces new funding to support women’s professional sport movement

Today, the Honourable Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth announced $325,000 for Canadian Women & Sport, to support It’s Time, the organization’s Commercial Women’s Sport Initiative.

“Women’s pro sports are more accessible and engaging than ever before, though we know that there is still a significant amount of untapped economic potential,” says Marci Ien, Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth. “The Government of Canada is proud to support Canadian Women & Sport as they work to unlock this potential, while also bringing the industry together. Canadian women’s pro teams are among the best in the world, and they deserve to be supported in every way.”

Minister Ien also participated in a roundtable discussion at Toronto Metropolitan University with Allison Sandmeyer-Graves, CEO of Canadian Women & Sport, and other industry leaders, to discuss the barriers faced by women in professional sport and to chart a path forward. The roundtable was attended by representatives from across the Canadian sport landscape including the PWHL, Project 8, NBA, along with amateaur and professional athletes. The private roundtable was hosted by Canadian Tire Corporation.

“2023 was an unprecedented year for professional women’s sport in Canada. There’s a sense of possibilityand momentum,” says Allison Sandmeyer-Graves, CEO of Canadian Women & Sport. “At the same time, a lot of uncertainty remains. Continued investment and bold actions are required to fully reap the benefits of a thriving professional women’s sport market in Canada. Everyone has a role to play. Thank you to the Government of Canada for joining this movement and investing in pro women’s sport.” 

In 2024, Canadian Women & Sport will be sharing new industry data on fan engagement and national interest in professional women sports in Canada.