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Female sports journalists from Indo-Pacific and First Nations communities to shine at FIFA Women’s World Cup

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(From left to right): Mavis Podokolo, Elizabeth Osifelo, Eliza Kukutu and Cynthia Seda Mewa inside one of the venues for the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia.
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A group of Indo-Pacific and First Nations women will take centre stage as trainee commentators and mobile journalists at the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup (WWC), under the support and mentorship of the ABC.

In collaboration with FIFA WWC, Oceania Football Confederation and the Australian Government Office for Sport, the ABC is delivering two comprehensive training and mentoring programs, one focusing on commentary training and the other on mobile journalism storytelling.

This initiative aims to increase career opportunities for women in sports media in Australia and the Indo-Pacific region, amplifying women’s voices in sports and fostering professional networks through joining in a global sporting event.

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It also serves as a bridge between Indo-Pacific and First Nations women, to strengthen connections, exchange ideas and experiences, and work collaboratively.

“This impressive group of female sports journalists, who are committed and passionate in their training programs, are leading the charge towards a more inclusive and diverse sports media industry,” Jo Elsom, ABC International Development Lead said.

Ali Osborne, Social Responsibility and Legacy Programme Manager, Oceania Football Confederation said, “We are excited to see more female journalists and commentators being offered opportunities to cover matches in their native language, which will help to increase the visibility of the women’s game in our region.”

Over the past three months, the women have undergone intensive media development and online training with ABC specialists, preparing for their participation in this major event.

During the FIFA WWC, participants will receive immersive training to enhance their skills and industry knowledge. They will practice commentary and mobile journalism skills before, during, and after the games, gaining valuable hands-on experience. Their participation not only represents a significant step towards achieving gender equality in sports media but also contributes to the diversification of perspectives and narratives within the industry.

“They will be fostering connections between themselves and the wider women in football community both now as well as into the future. This is a crucial component for the growth and development of the game, providing opportunities and pathways both on and off the pitch,” Johanna Wood, Chair of FIFA Legacy Working Group said.

The Australian Government is supporting this training as it aligns with its goal of increasing gender equality, diversity and inclusion in sport, increasing the First Nations and Indo-Pacific presence to the World Cup.

The FIFA Women’s World Cup will be held in Australia and New Zealand from 20 July to 20 August 2023. This project has been jointly funded by FIFA and the Australian Government, through Team Up and Office for Sport.

About ABC International Development

ABC International Development (ABCID) is the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s media development unit. The role of ABCID is to support storytellers through training, sharing media expertise and providing technical and program support to partners in three areas: skills and abilities, content creation and broadcast and research.

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