Celebrating International Women's Day across the 4 nations

On International Women’s Day four leading feminist charities took part in a chain of events across the UK, exploring their work to #BreakTheBias.

This online chain of event saw with each nation hosting their own session.

The Fawcett Society was delighted to be joined by three incredible organisations across the nation: 

  • Northern Ireland European Women's Platform: The Northern Ireland element explored what a Northern Ireland that works for women would look like. Chaired by Louise Kennedy, Chair of NIWEP, they heard from women involved in shaping the future in a variety of ways.
  • Fawcett Society: Fawcett explored gender stereotypes in the world of sport. The panel session was focused on the barriers women face when taking part in sports and how those hurdles start in childhood. 
  • Women's Equality Network, Wales: Catherine Fookes, Director of WEN, Wales, was joined in conversation with Evelyn James, WEN, Wales Divere2020 Campaign Manager, Professor Laura McAllister and Professor Uzo Iwobi OBE as they discussed diverse and equal representation.
  • Engender: To Exist is to Resist: Exploring Black Feminism in Europe. Engender hosted Professor Akwugo Emejulu and journalist Assa Samaké-Roman for a conversation about activism, resistance, and how Black feminism and Afrofeminism imagine a Black feminist Europe. 

Break the Bias: Tackling the barriers to women playing sport

Above, you can watch Fawcett's event, as a part of the online chain of events, on tackling the barriers to women playing sport.

Our Smash Stereotypes campaign explores how gender expectations significantly limit our children; you can find out more about work in this area in our recent blog. This years International Women's Day theme Breaking the Bias is an excellent opportunity to explore how across the sporting world, we can tackle gender stereotypes. 

Our Sex and Power 2022 Index shows that not only is womens representation in sport leadership roles extremely low, but it is also declining with girls being held back in sports from a young age. Our research as part of the Commission on Gender Stereotypes in Early Childhood has found that parents have a huge role to play in setting expectations in what boys and girls can achieve, with parents gendered beliefs about their childrens ability have a strong relationship with their engagement in sports in particular, driving down girls participation. We recommended to education practitioners that a key way to tackle gender stereotypes was to reduce unnecessary segregation in sports and encourage children to explore what they like.


  • Chair - Jemima Olchawski (she/her), CEO, Fawcett Society
  • Dr. Stacey Pope (she/her), Associate Professor, Department of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Durham University
  • Linda Agyemang (she/her), Co-Founder, Black Girls Do Run UK
  • Major Saf Greenwood (she/her), Tideway Odyssey
  • Hope Powell (she/her), Women's First-Team Manager, Brighton & Hove Albion

Booking for this event has now closed.