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Chelsea's Katie Chapman supports Goals for Girls!

Chelsea's Katie Chapman supports Goals for Girls!

This week, Chelsea Ladies captain Katie Chapman joined 150 girls aged between ten and thirteen from schools across London at Stamford Bridge for a special ‘Goals for Girls’ event. At an interactive workshop, Katie Chapman and the girls addressed the barriers girls face participating in sport in the UK and across the world.

Katie Chapman and girls at Stamford Bridge stadium

During the session the girls identified stereotypes associated with sport, explored the positive impact sport can have on communities across the globe and created placards challenging the assumption that girls can’t play football.

Fresh from winning the Women’s Super League Spring Series title, Katie answered questions from the girls about what it is like to be a woman in sport, the barriers she herself had faced, and what words of encouragement she had for girls playing football today.

Speaking about her own experience growing up playing football she said, "When I was younger, football was really my outlet and my escape but there weren’t really any clubs around or role models in women’s football to follow.

"It’s been amazing to come here today with Plan International to see the amount of girls who are playing football.

"It’s good for girls here to experience the same opportunities as boys and know that they should follow their dreams without feeling any restrictions. We have to show that there should always be equality, whatever the circumstances, whether it’s in football, sport or everyday life."

Tackling stereotypes for good

The girls challenged enduring public assumptions that football is a man’s game. New research published by Plan International UK found that 58% of the UK population still think football is more suitable for men. The survey, in which 2003 adults were polled by Opinium*, found that 41% of those polled believe football is equally suitable for men and women. Just 2% feel the sport is more suitable for women.

Responding to these findings, Katie said,

58% really surprised me, I hadn’t expected it to be quite so high. I was hoping that in this day and age it would be lower. It is changing, slowly, with more games being televised and more women in sports in the public eye but there are still barriers we need to overcome. We need girls understand that football, and sport more generally, is just as suitable for girls.

Plan International became Chelsea FC’s global charity partner in September 2015, and together we are working to change the lives of children in Asia, Africa and South America. Our joint project in Colombia used the power of football to teach children about respect, tolerance and equality, to help keep children safe in a country where gangs, guns and domestic violence diminish the life chances of girls and boys as they grow up.

Changing children's lives through football

Discover more about our partnership with Chelsea Football Club

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