Abi Griffiths, TV sports presenter and Inspiring Women ‘career speed networker’ shares her experiences. Many of the sports Abi covers are predominantly male; motor racing, rugby and boxing. She is passionate about opening up this world to more women.
Wednesday morning, London Aquatics Centre, 300 school girls aged 14 -15, Clare Balding as host, 60 influential females from the world of sport, what’s not to love.
The ‘Inspiring Women in Sport’ campaign is the brainchild of the charity Education and Employers Taskforce and today’s event is a speed-dating type affair (without the dating bit!).
It’s a chance for these girls to get a glimpse of all the different kinds of jobs out there in the world of sport and hear directly from the women doing it.
The venue is a befitting one and conjures up vivid images of Olympic champions and Chad’s Le Clos’s dad. Coincidentally and rather brilliantly, on this particular morning we are also reminded that it’s the training ground for champion diver Tom Daley, an unexpected treat!
I was lucky enough to double up on the table with some of the other female representatives and hear their stories spoken in milestones and soundbites;
“I knew I wanted to be part of that team….I couldn’t imagine not competing, I love the training…I just kept at it until I found a way” as well as the underlining messages;
“find a way to do what you love, the job will pick the person not just the CV….take the confidence sport gives you and run with it, apply it to every area of your life”.
On leaving, I overheard a table of girls say that the most powerful message that they will take with them is to “never give up!”
It was a personal mantra that I kept close to my heart whilst I was forging out a career in this exciting, demanding and rewarding industry. Hopefully, there may be at least one girl, out of the many with whom I shared my tales and insights, that now thinks that hosting motorsport programmes feels like something they’d really like to do.
You can get involved; give an hour to inspire the next generation of women! 12,650 women across the country already have – let’s make it 20,000! Join us: http://www.inspiringthefuture.org
Find out more about Abi’s career: http://www.abigriffiths.com/