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CAAWS – (Toronto, Ontario – March 14, 2018) The Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS) will receive a $3 million investment from Sport Canada to expand the thought leadership and solutions it provides to the Canadian sport system on gender equity and inclusion.

On March 14, The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister for Science and Sport, announced this as one action of the federal government’s $30 million investment for gender equality in sport, which was first announced last February as part of the 2018 federal budget.

CAAWS is committed to fully leveraging this opportunity to create a more equitable and inclusive sport system that empowers women and girls, within and through sport. These funds will support initiatives targeting participation and leadership, with emphasis on building capacity in the sport system for inclusion of girls and women.

Specifically, CAAWS will deliver a set of interconnected initiatives designed to accelerate the achievement of gender equity. This includes expanding the Women in Sport Encouragement (WISE) Fund and the Women and Leadership program. CAAWS will also be developing new resources, including an online module focused on gender-based analysis for sport, a gender equity audit service, and a custom gender equity action plan development service for sport organizations.

CAAWS is also at the ready to support the effectiveness of other initiatives funded by the remainder of Sport Canada’s investment to ensure that efforts are coordinated and positioned for success. With the Government of Canada’s stated goal of gender equality at all levels of sport by 2035, and the recent commitments of the Provincial-Territorial governments to advance gender equity, this investment is both timely and critical for advancing tangible action.

CAAWS is honoured to be recognized by Sport Canada as a leader in effecting this change and is grateful to Sport Canada and Minister Duncan for their continued support and collaboration.

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Quote from Allison Sandmeyer-Graves, CEO, CAAWS:

“This is an unprecedented investment in sport and in the futures of Canadian women and girls, who have so much to gain from increased involvement and leadership. Our sport and physical activity system can only reach its fullest potential when sport organizations embody the values of diversity and inclusion and harness the immeasurable talents of women and girls.”

Quote from Nathalie Cook, President, CAAWS Board of Directors:

“CAAWS has an almost forty-year history of advocating for the kind of systemic change that this investment reflects. We are ready to embrace Sport Canada’s contribution to its fullest extent and look forward to building stronger partnerships with sport organizations and leaders who have a crucial role to play in advancing equity throughout the sport and physical activity system.”

Quote from The Honourable Kirsty Duncan, Minister for Science and Sport:

“Girls and women deserve equal access to sport so they can follow their dreams and fulfill their potential. That’s why we’re committed to achieving gender equity in sport by 2035. Today’s announcement is another step toward that, and we’ll continue to work with our provincial and territorial governments, as well as sport organizations and athletes, to make Canadian sport more welcoming, accessible to girls and women.”


About CAAWS:

CAAWS is dedicated to creating an equitable and inclusive Canadian sport and physical activity system that empowers girls and women—as active participants and leaders—within and through sport. With a focus on systemic change, we partner with governments, organizations and leaders to challenge the status quo and to advance solutions that result in measurable change.


For further information and media inquiries, please contact:

Greer Gemin
Communications and Administration Coordinator
Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity