By Denis J. Croke
THERE has been a significant boost for Gaelic4Mothers&Others clubs across Laois with the news that Sports Direct are the new official sponsors of the Ladies Gaelic Football Association’s Gaelic4Mothers&Others programme, in a three-year deal.
The Gaelic4Mothers&Others initiative is an innovative way to introduce mothers and other women to Ladies Gaelic Football in a fun, non-competitive and social environment. The initiative has proven immensely popular since its inception, with 220 clubs from all 32 counties currently involved.
The important role that sport and physical activity plays in our lives has been highlighted even more in the past 18 months by its absence, with many women across Ireland unable to reap the mental and physical rewards associated with partaking in physical activity regularly. Sports Direct believes that now, more than ever, is the time to encourage and celebrate female participation in sport, not just for the sport itself, but for the other benefits it brings.
Today FM broadcaster, Alison Curtis will be trying her hand at Ladies Gaelic Football for the very first time in the coming weeks when she joins up with her local Gaelic4Mothers&Others club, St Vincent’s in Dublin.
Born and raised in Ontario, Canada, Curtis has never previously played Ladies Gaelic Football and will document her new adventure on social media, giving women across the country an insight into the Gaelic4Mothers&Others programme.
Ms Curtis said: “Since I moved to Ireland, the uniqueness of Gaelic Games is something that has always intrigued me. I’m really excited to begin my journey with St Vincent’s, and I’m delighted to team up with Sports Direct and showcase what Gaelic4Mothers&Others is all about.”
Speaking at the announcement, Ciara Murray, Group Marketing Manager at Sports Direct said: “At Sports Direct, we firmly believe in the inclusivity of sport. Our involvement in Gaelic Games at a grass-roots and inter-county level has shown first-hand just what sport can do for a person, a family or a community. Gaelic Games is not just for the elite, and what makes it so special is the participation of so many people across the country. While Gaelic Games provides many sporting role models for children across the country, programmes such as Gaelic4Mothers&Others ensure that there are plenty closer to home.”
CEO of the LGFA, Helen O’Rourke said: “We are delighted to welcome Sports Direct on board as official sponsor of our Gaelic4Mothers&Others programme. Sports Direct’s sponsorship will help to elevate a thriving programme to a new level and the Sports Direct team has demonstrated an incredible passion for, and interest in, Gaelic4Mothers&Others right from the very start of this process. We look forward to working alongside them for the next three years and, with over 200 clubs currently involved in Gaelic4Mothers&Others, we are hoping to build this programme even further.”
As part of the new partnership, Sports Direct will release a new video series ‘#MyReasonWhy’ to showcase ambassadors across the four provinces of Ireland who will share their reason why – why they’re involved in Gaelic 4 Mothers & Others, and why it means so much to them.
All 220 clubs signed up to the Gaelic4Mothers&Others initiative will also receive a tool-kit as part of the initiative, which will include a social media package and a Sports Direct flag to champion the Gaelic4Mothers&Others initiative in their community.
For more information on the Gaelic4Mothers&Others programme, please visit: https://ladiesgaelic.ie/lgfa-hub/games-development/gaelic4mothersothers/