Advocacy Campaigns

Women in Sport Aotearoa is committed to ensuring that women and girls have a powerful and respected voice.

In its Strategic Plan, Women in Sport Aotearoa has pledged to be the voice that:

  • Leads positive conversations around gender equity in sport and recreation
  • Shares research and provides insight/commentary on results
  • Challenges poor behaviours and holds stakeholders to account
  • Showcases and celebrates the success of female leaders in sport and recreation
  • Develops new and maximises all other available communication platforms to amplify message
  • Advocates with stakeholders, sector and media to increase quality and quantity of female sport coverage
  • Empowers ambassadors to carry messages to a wide audience

Here are some examples of the advocacy work undertaken by Women in Sport Aotearoa:


Advocacy & News

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Why NZ is now the outlier in world women’s sport“, LockerRoom, 9 July 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Women’s World Cup all about the legacy, says NZF chief“, Reuters, 26 June 2020.

Julie Paterson, Co-Chair – “Hosting women’s world cups in three codes will be huge for female sport participation“, TVNZ, 26 June 2020.

Julie Paterson, Co-Chair – “New Zealand hosting trio of women’s world cups a coup for female sports“, TVNZ, 26 June 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Women’s World Cup All About the Legacy, Says NZF Chief“, New York Times, 25 June 2020. 

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Rugby: Raelene Castle victim of industry double standards, says Women in Sport Aotearoa CEO“, Newshub, 24 April 2020.

Louisa Wall, Board Member – “The year of a Ferns fairytale, football and fair pay” – Radio NZ “Fairplay” Podcast and LockerRoom, 20 December 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Blind swimmer Mary Fisher faces new challenges out of the pool” – Stuff, 7 October 2019.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “Promoting women’s sport on the menu at breakfast of champions” – Stuff, 8 August 2019.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair, and Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Busting the myth: No one watches women’s sport – first published on LockerRoom 15 August 2019, syndicated on Radio NZ and Stuff.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Why we’re challenging the system for equality in sport – first published on LockerRoom 20 May 2019, syndicated on Stuff.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Support Women’s Sport’ name for Basin Reserve? – Radio New Zealand and LockerRoom 17 July 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Visit to the UN Commission on the Status of Women / Helen Clark as Patron – Radio NZ Fair Play, 29 March 2019 (16″).

Helen Clark raising her voice for women in sport”, LockerRoom” – 8 March 2019.

Helen Clark becomes patron of International Working Group on women in sport” – Stuff, 8 March 2019.

Former Prime Minister Helen Clark raising her voice for women in sport” – Stuff, 8 March 2019.


COVID-19 Response & Recovery

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – First tranche of COVID-19 sport relief funding released by NZ govt, Stabroek News, 8 July 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – First tranche of COVID-19 sport relief funding released by New Zealand government, Reuters, 7 July 2020. 

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Government details $80m sport recovery, Stuff, 7 July 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, IWG Secretary General – ‘A generation of female athletes could be left by the wayside‘, Al Jazeera International, 30 May 2020.

Jeff Latch, Head of Spark Sport – ‘Women’s sports rely on women viewers‘, Radio New Zealand, 29 May 2020. Syndicated on Fiji Times.

Jeff Latch, Head of Spark Sport – ‘NZ sports among those ‘woefully unprepared’ for pandemic, TV official says‘, Reuters, 29 May 2020. Syndicated on ESPN Australia and CNA.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO, WISPA – ‘Women’s Sport Faces Generational Loss From COVID-19 Cuts: New Zealand Agency‘, Reuters, 28 May 2020. Syndicated on New York Times, Stabroek Times, Radio New Zealand.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO, WISPA – ‘Why there’s still hope for women’s sport‘, LockerRoom, 15 May 2020, syndicated on Stuff.

Katie Sadleir, GM Women’s Rugby, World Rugby – ‘Golden year awaits women’s rugby in 2021‘, LockerRoom, 2 May 2020.

Martin Snedden, Board Member, NZ Cricket -‘How the Black Caps home summer might look and why NZ Cricket is depending on it‘, Stuff, 2 May 2020.

Katie Sadleir, GM Women’s Rugby, World Rugby – ‘2021 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand won’t be shifted‘, Radio New Zealand, 1 May 2020.

Sarai Bareman, Chief Women’s Football Officer, FIFA – ‘Women’s football can flourish out of Covid-19‘, LockerRoom, 24 April 2020.

Sarai Bareman, Chief Women’s Football Officer, FIFA – ‘Coronavirus: Women’s sport on back-burner as money reigns supreme‘, Stuff, 24 April 2020.

Sarai Bareman, Chief Women’s Football Officer, FIFA – ‘Elite women’s football in danger of being overlooked after Covid-19‘, Radio NZ, 24 April 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO, WISPA – “Coronavirus: New Zealand Rugby unlikely to meet board diversity quota, risking funding“, Stuff, 23 April 2020

Martin Snedden, Board Member, NZ Cricket – ‘New Zealand sport has good opportunity post Covid-19 – Martin Snedden‘, Radio NZ, 20 April 2020.

Martin Snedden, Board Member, NZ Cricket -‘Clubs likely lose out on millions — Snedden‘, Otago Daily Times, 18 April 2020.

Martin Snedden, Board Member, NZ Cricket -‘Government rules out competitive sport at Level 3, as golfers wait for clarity‘, Stuff, 17 April 2020.

Kereyn Smith, Chief Executive, NZ Olympic Committee – ‘Concerns women’s sport could bear brunt of financial cutbacks‘, Radio NZ, 9 April 2020.

Visit our “Leadership from Lockdown” page for more information on this series of interviews.


Change Inspires Change

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “NZ builds world-first hub for women’s sport”LockerRoom, 4 September 2020.


Female Representation in Sport Leadership

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair: “Progress toward sports board equality still entangled in Old Boys’ network” – Stuff, 8 March 2020.

Captains Lunch launch: “Raelene Castle: the brave kiwi leader of Rugby Australia stays calm under fire” – Stuff, 16 February 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Beatrice Faumuinā first Pasifika woman appointed to Sport NZ board” – Stuff, 16 January 2020.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “Male-dominated sports organisations getting desperate for women, as time runs out” – Stuff, 3 July 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – The strategic case for gender equity on sports boards – first published on LockerRoom 19 June 2019, syndicated on Stuff.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Rugby: ‘Less than zero’ chance of female being appointed NZ Rugby CEO” – Newshub, 9 December 2018.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “White Ferns, Leadership in Sport and Youth Olympics” – WISP Sports, 29 September 2018.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Government chips in $10m to shake up women’s sport” – Newshub, 11 October 2018.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “If you’re not sitting at the table, you are on the menu” – Radio NZ Fair Play, 1 October 2018.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “Lack of women in coaching detrimental to sport, says professor” – Stuff, 6 June 2018.


Women in Coaching

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair: “Sports system failing top women coaches” – Radio NZ, 5 March 2020.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair: “Basketball: Breakers’ addition one of few women at NZ’s top level” – Radio NZ,  4 March 2020.


Pay Equity & Prizemoney in Women’s Sport

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “How Kiwi female athletes pay the bills after retirement” – Stuff, 31 August 2019.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “Netball World Cup prompts call to invest in sports pay equity” – Stuff, 22 July 2019.

Julie Paterson, Co-Chair – “Netball World Cup: Silver Ferns are sadly undervalued and underpaid” – Stuff, 22 July 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – No prize money for Silver Ferns despite epic win – Radio NZ Checkpoint, 22 July 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – Fans disappointed as world champion Silver Ferns fly home in economy class – Stuff, 23 July 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – White Ferns/Women’s Master Agreement: Response – 13 August 2019.


Safety & Sexism in Sport

Raelene Castle ONZM – “Raelene Castle tells of death threats over Israel Folau ‘issue” – Stuff, 4 September 2020.

Raelene Castle ONZM – “I had death threats over Folau case, says ex-Rugby Australia chief Castle” – MSN Sport, 5 September 2020.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Sport NZ tells gymnastics community it can trust complaints process” – Stuff, 4 August 2020

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Sport NZ moves to protect vulnerable athletes from Nassar-like predators” – Stuff, 5 July 2020.

Louisa Wall, Director & Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “How to prevent sexual violence through and in sport” – Radio NZ Fair Play, 27 February 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “It’s time to say ‘non’ to abuse and sexism in sport” – LockerRoom, 6 December 2018.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “It’s time we all stopped ignoring sexism – but how?” – TVNZ Seven Sharp, 7 September 2017.


Female Participation in Sport

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “Rethink of sport in education needed to tackle drop in female participation” – Stuff, 15 October 2019.

Rachel Froggatt, CEO – “Women’s sports boss looks to halt drift” – Radio New Zealand, 12 August 2018.

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair – “College Sport says it won’t budge over girl playing in boys’ team” – Stuff, 26 August 2018.


Media Coverage of Women’s Sport

Sarah Leberman, Co-Chair: “It’s a long road to gender equality in New Zealand sport” – Stuff, 24 September 2017.

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