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Sports For A Purpose

Let’s get ready for equality! Girl Up is tackling gender inequality in sports to inspire and empower girls to break down gender barriers in sports in their own communities and around the world. Participation in sports builds leadership skills both on and off the field. Learn more about the gender inequities girls face in sports and how you can take action to level the playing field for girls everywhere.

  1. 64%

    of girls will have quit sports by the age of 16-17

  2. 80%

    of girls feel they do not belong in sports

  3. 5%

    of U.S. sports media coverage features women

why girls?

Here Are The Facts
  • Girls are less likely than boys to participate in sports. About 40% of teen girls in the US do not participate in sports, compared with 25% of boys (Women’s Sports Foundation).
  • By age 14, girls drop out of sports at twice the rate boys drop out of sports (Play Like a Girl).
  • Reflecting on their own careers, 61% of the women executives believe that their personal involvement in sport contributed positively to their career success and advancement (Ernst & Young, 2014).

A 2019 survey found that 77% of Girl Up Club members believe there are gender barriers that prevent girls from participating in sports. In addition, 80% of Girl Up Club members have experienced (or know someone who experienced) low attendance at girls’ sports events and body shaming of athletes. It’s time to put gender inequalities in the spotlight and create change.

Developing Leadership Skills

From youth sports teams to professional athletes, girls and women face discrimination in pursuing and continuing with sports. Gender inequities are everywhere—just look at the lack of access to funding, limited media coverage of female athletes and women’s sports, and the pervasive body shaming of female athletes, to name just a few.

Yet, sports and team activities are a proven way to develop girls’ leadership skills and confidence both on and off the field. Until we level the playing field for girls in sports, we won’t fully realize gender justice.

2022 sports for a purpose event series

Join Us Virtually!

Advancing gender equality within sports is a big game. Girl Up is excited to hit the ground running and kick off our 2022 Sports for a Purpose Virtual Events Tour!

Join us throughout 2022 to gain a deeper understanding of gender gap in sports. Throughout these events, we’ll cover everything from sports facility accessibility, social stigmas girl athletes face, pay equity, media representation, to the importance of sports in becoming a successful leader! You can expect to hear from professional women in sports and you’ll have the opportunity to create an action plan to advancing girls’ sports participation in your community.

We will continually update our list of upcoming events. Check back often for registration links!

Did you miss it?

Join Girl Up, WWE, and Women’s Sports Foundation for virtual #SportsForAPurpose panel discussions bringing together sports leaders, athletes, and young changemakers!

  1. SFAP Virtual Panel #1 – April 9 at 2:30 PM EST

    Join Sarah Axelson, Stephanie McMahon, and Swin Cash for a panel on leadership & pay equity!

    Missed it? Watch it here
  2. SFAP Virtual Panel #2 – April 13 at 2:30 PM EST

    Join Charlotte Flair, Olivia Wayne, & Mary Kate Callahan for a panel on media coverage in sports!

    Missed it? Watch it here
  3. SFAP Virtual Panel #3 – April 15 at 2:30 PM EST

    Join Alexa Bliss, Chris Mosier, & Jessamyn Stanley for a panel on physical & mental health!

    Missed it? Watch it here
Show your Support

Show your support for gender equality in sports by signing the Girl Up Sports Call to Action!

Sign today!

Get Involved

Ready to level the playing field?

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    Project Awards

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    Girl Up Scholarship Fund

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    Join the Community

    Get together with others who want to break down barriers in sports.


Give to Girl Up

Your support of our girl changemakers means Girl Up can continue to work toward a world where girls have equal value, opportunity, and the chance to reach their fullest potential. You can make a difference in the life of a girl by donating today.

How to Get Involved

All around the world, our network of a million supporters is mobilizing for gender equality. Will you stand with us?

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