Outer East Football Netball are encouraging all our clubs, teams and participants to “Play with Pride” this weekend as we celebrate inclusion through our Pride Round.
When Jason Ball publicly came out as gay in 2012, his teammates from the Yarra Glen Football Netball Club wanted to show him they had his back.
The team came up with the idea to stage a Pride Cup, with players wearing rainbow jumpers, and 50 metre lines painted in rainbow colours.
It was an event that galvanised the entire community and became the inspiration for the now annual AFL Pride Game, first played between St Kilda FC and Sydney Swans in 2016.
Yarra Glen’s Pride Cup this season has seen it’s fair amount of disruptions with a late change in Division as well as the Clubroom works due to September 2022’s floods, and won’t take place in its originally planned form.
The Pride Cup group has grown exponentially since the first game out in Yarra Glen – with over 515 clubs involved in a Pride Cup event across a wide array of sporting codes – from footy, to hockey, roller derby to lawn bowls, netball, water polo and beyond.
The latest Pride Cup impact report found that: ‘The study found players at clubs that host pride cup games – which aim to support LGBTQI+ players, fans and officials, while challenging homophobia and transphobia within sporting clubs – used significantly less homophobic language than players at clubs that have never hosted a game.’
The impact Pride Cup has is significant – reducing homophobic language in sporting clubs by up to 40% when a Pride Cup event and education session is held. These impacts ripple out into the wider community, making entire communities safer and more inclusive for it’s LGBTI+ members.
But A lot of work still has to be done to make sport safe and inclusive for everyone – only 51% of participants interviewed strongly disagreed that homosexuality is wrong or unnatural.
Pride Cup events are joyous, celebratory statements of love and acceptance for LGBTI+ players, spectators and members of the local community that have an immediate and direct impact.
Join a movement for change that transcends sport, host your own Pride Cup, education session or donate today. https://pridecup.org.au/education/