Kick It Out help support launch of Eighth Wonder programme
Over 45 young women took part in the Eighth Wonder programme’s inaugural event on Friday 28 October, which was supported by Kick It Out.
The programme, founded by marketing and communications professional Charlotte Richardson, is designed for 14-20 year old women with aspirations to become football’s future female leaders.
A non-funded project, Eighth Wonder soon won support from key partners including Kick It Out, Kent FA, K Sports Cobdown, Project 500 and Kent Sport before inviting girls to sign up.
The launch event saw dozens of girls from across the county take part in a variety of sessions and workshops.
The morning session was based around building confidence and self-esteem before tackling the topic of mental health, with the young women in attendance also able to take part in a Q&A session with Gillingham Ladies footballer and business owner, Emma Tune.
Gold medal winning Olympian, Charlotte Evans MBE, was also on hand to talk to the Eighth Wonder audience about her career in sport and the best ways to take on any barriers.
Following a jam-packed morning an even busier afternoon followed. Each participant was welcomed to five individual workshops, showcasing different careers in football including a session delivered by Kick It Out’s Education Officer, Hayley Bennett.
To round off the day, the audience were able to gain fascinating glimpse into life working in football through a panel discussion including Hayley, Derby County coach Alena Moulton, former Gillingham FC professional footballer and current Girls Academy coach Ian Cox and The Football Association’s Director of Participation, Kelly Simmons MBE.
The quartet offered unique insight into the profession and top tips for the group to take away as they progress through the programme, which will see them assigned a personal mentor and bespoke volunteering opportunity, based upon their interest in the game.
Eighth Wonder founder, Charlotte Richardson, was delighted with how the day went:
“When the idea came to create this programme, I could never have dreamed within such a short space of time, we would welcome so many young women to be part of our first Eighth Wonder group.
“We could not have put on such an informative day without our range of partners, who’ve demonstrated invaluable commitment to ensuring the football’s future generation of female leaders are given the encouragement and belief they need to succeed.”
Hayley was pleased to participate in the first event for the new programme:
“I was delighted to be involved in the Eighth Wonder launch event. It is really important that we support young women and other represented groups who want to work in the football industry.
“We have got 50 girls from all over Kent to start thinking about breaking down barriers, and it would be amazing to see an event like this replicated all over the country.”