Teenage girl wearing headscarf shooting the ball in basketball

About Us

Because women and girls belong

Founded in 1984, Women in Sport is the longest-standing charity in its field with a proud history of securing change for women and girls. At its heart lies a deep understanding of the needs of women and girls in relation to sport and a passion to address the stubborn gender inequalities that still exist.

Based on expert insight, Women in Sport challenges the system, offers solutions and inspires change. Not only do we believe in girls and women having access to fair and safe sport for the joy, fulfilment and lifelong benefits it offers, but we care about this because it can address health inequalities and help society to thrive.

We continue to build strong partnerships with the corporate, sports and leisure sectors, grow our influence in parliament and develop powerful projects. By doing so we have led the field in creating change for teenage girls and challenged the system to better serve women in midlife.

Young girl playing tennis

Our Vision

Our vision is that no-one is excluded from the joy, fulfilment and lifelong benefits of sport.

We know that gender stereotypes and institutional bias are holding girls and women back from sport, and in life. We believe that it is wrong to deny them access to sport, and that the distinct physicality of girls and women must be understood and reflected in sport. We exist because we believe women and girls belong in sport.

Read more about our beliefs

A group of girls playing basketball

Our aims

To achieve our vision we we aim to further:

  • Understand the needs and aspirations of the full diversity of women and girls throughout their lives
  • Challenge gender inequality in sport by exposing the problem
  • Develop concepts, policies and solutions
  • Inspire change through collaboration and influence
  • Ensure the charity is highly effective

Read more about our aims

Our founders

Women in Sport was born in 1984 when four inspirational advocates for gender equality in sport came together and formed the nucleus of a new movement.

Our Chair Celia Brackenridge Professor Celia Brackenridge OBE (d. 2018): Women in Sport’s first Chair, Celia believed strongly in sport as a tool for achieving wider social change. She was the most capped Great Britain lacrosse player of her time, the first physical education student in the UK to graduate with a first-class degree, and a tireless campaigner for sports equality and child protection for which she won her OBE.
Our Chair Anita White Dr Anita White OBE: A subsequent Chair and significant driver of the charity, Anita captained the England Hockey team to World Cup victory in 1975 and established the inaugural International Conference of Women and Sport in 1994. A teacher and academic, Anita was a Director at the Sports Council before playing a leading role in international women’s sport through her foundation.
Sue Campbell, Baroness Campbell of Loughborough DBE: An England netballer and GB pentathlete, Sue has also been highly influential in sport. Sue set up and led the National Coaching Foundation before founding and leading the Youth Sport Trust. She chaired UK Sport 2003-2013 and went on to transform women’s football, ultimately leading to the historic Euros victory for England in 2022.
Our Chair Margaret Talbot Professor Margaret Talbot OBE (d. 2014): A highly influential academic, author and activist who acted as a champion for women and disability sports. Margaret was a life-long advocate for universal access to physical education, influencing our National Curriculum and becoming President of the International Council for Sport Science and Physical Education.

It was Derek Wyatt, a former England Rugby Union player and highly regarded Labour MP for Sittingbourne and Sheppey from 1997 to 2010, who convened a meeting of these four powerful women to form the Women’s Sport Foundation (now Women in Sport).

Read more about our history

Find out more

A young South Asian girl sat in primary school

Our Campaigns

We're demanding change so that no woman or girl is excluded from the joy and lifelong benefits of sport.

Two women hugging after scoring a winning goal

Our People

Say hello to our small but mighty team, creating change across the sector to encourage women and girls into sport.