#ShePaddles is the British Canoeing initiative which aims to get more women and girls paddling. And not just paddling...we want to see them progress into coaching and leadership roles too.
Why do you need an initiative for this?
Well, it all starts with boring statistics and figures. No, don’t leave yet...we aren’t going to quote them all here! We know you’d far rather be paddling than staring at a page of stats. Here’s a basic overview; there are more men paddling than there are women. There you have it, short and (for us) not so sweet.
Ok, just one statistic; our membership sits at around 27% female and we want to even that out.
If you would like to read more about why we have a #ShePaddles initiative take a read of this article.
What is #ShePaddles comprised of?
#ShePaddles started small but it's growing year on year and it's far more than just a hashtag:
- #ShePaddles Ambassadors - Each year we choose ten inspirational women who share their love of paddlesport via social media and on the ground. Applications for new ambassadors open on International Women's Day in March. You can learn more about our #ShePaddles Ambassadors here.
- Facebook Women's Paddling Community - This group was created to allow female paddlers (and those who want to become paddlers!) a space to share ideas, make new friends, meet up, swap advice and stories and discuss paddling in general. The group can be found here.
- #ShePaddles Club Champions - Funding from the Sport England Diversity fund is enabling us to create 100 opportunities in clubs and organisations across England for women and girls to develop as Paddlesport Instructors. The project aims to improve the paddlesport provision for women and girls in clubs and organisations and focuses on those near to cities. Applications will open on March 8th. To learn more click here.
- Engaging Women in Paddlesport document - this document was produced to provide guidance to clubs, centres and other organisations who want to gain and retain more female members/participants. You can download it here.
If you would like any further information or advice about #ShePaddles and how you can get involved please contact Cadi at: [email protected]
Women’s paddling featured on BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour
BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour discuss the health benefits of being on the water, the Facebook Women’s Paddling Community and the diversity of paddling disciplines. Listen back.
#ShePaddles Ambassador, Julie Perren's mentoring scheme for women
Keen to break down one of the known barriers to women’s participation and development in sport, Julie has chosen to start a mentoring program to encourage more women onto the coaching pathway.