📸  Rob Lawson Photography
On a weekend when you could watch Women’s AFL as well as top-level basketball, rugby, rugby league, and soccer all live on free-to-air TV and the ICC Women’s World Cup on pay TV, the evidence that women’s sport is now finally in the spotlight is there – a far step from just a few years ago when it was a struggle to have mainstream media even acknowledge women’s sport let alone broadcast it.

Such is the progress and extent of women’s sport that it can now be enjoyed by everyone as a spectacle as well as being a marketable product. And while it is something that should be consistently acknowledged and applauded, participation of women in sport always takes on a special significance when celebrating International Women’s Day each year.

Darebin Falcons, as a women’s sports organisation, has been and is a strong contributor to this evolution of women’s sport. Not only with its contribution to AFLW footy stocks, but also in the local community for its soccer program and its broader work continually and historically advocating for women in sport.
Darebin has been widely acknowledged as being a key resource for the player base in the long-awaited development of the AFLW competition in 2016. But broader than that, it boasts an even larger participation rate in its popular soccer program and each summer fields teams in girls’ cricket across at least three development age groups.
The common denominator, the key word used, when speaking with players and those involved with the club is culture. A drive to excel, to represent and to promote the involvement of women in sport at all levels and over a thirty-year history, they have developed a blueprint for how to create that very special environment, which has ultimately led to significant and impactful success both on and off the field.

“[The Falcons] put women first… It’s run by women. Women are the leaders of the club,”

“It tells our young people that you are important, if you’re a young woman, that you are important and that you deserve as much opportunity as the person next to you who might happen to be male… It’s important. And it’s important that Darebin is always there doing that.”

Jane Lange

Senior Assistant Coach, Melbourne AFLW, (former Darebin Falcon Player & Coach)

Source: Darebin Falcons History Project
Darebin Falcons began last year ready to field 40 teams across Aussie rules, soccer, cricket and eight ball, which provided opportunities for about 750 women and girls to participate in sport in an inclusive, encouraging, supportive and safe environment.

Into 2022, and those numbers have remained consistent with plans to again field 40 teams for girls and women across those sports.

The purpose of IWD is to spread the message of gender equality and working together in making a better society where there is no gender bias and a greater recognition and acceptance of gender equality – which is also the key objective of the Darebin Falcons, through the fun and universally embraced platform of sport.


Happy International Women’s Day to all!

Source: Darebin Falcons History Project

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