The WISE Leadership Group wrapped up their program on Sunday, January 23, 2022. The goal of the Leadership Program was to inspire and educate the next generation of female volleyball leaders by promoting gender equity and encourage female opportunities in the Ontario Volleyball Association (OVA). With the support from WISE Women and Sport organization, four topics (Authentic Leadership, Values Based Leadership, Communication as a Leader and OVA Leader Opportunities) were presented to the athletes by female coaches throughout Fall 2021.
Through the program, 37 female athletes were involved and were guided by 4 lead coaches and the assistance of 14 mentor coaches.
As part of the program, a discussion on leadership ‘Next Steps’ occurred and it was encouraging to hear most athletes who participated wanting to be involved (or are already involved) in a leadership capacity within the OVA.
Following the presentations, the athletes used their confidence, skills and content they acquired from the program to lead presentations to younger athletes within their club to instill leadership lessons and experiences to the younger players.
As of January 23, the athletes had led five presentations to younger club teams, reaching approximately 65 athletes, with an additional five more scheduled. It was encouraging to hear feedback that the younger athletes were engaged, asking questions and eager to learn more about becoming female leaders in the volleyball community.
Although the program is complete for this year, ideas for the additional female leadership training is already beginning.
The OVA would like to thank the Canadian Women & Sport WISE grant fund for the opportunity to deliver this initiative as well as our coaches from the community: Jennifer Neilson, Natasha Spaling, Erica Nacarrato and the female mentor coaches who helped bring this program to the OVA youth.