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Victorian women encouraged to show This Girl Can

16/08/2019

Almost 400,000 Victorian women have been inspired to get active as a result of VicHealth’s This Girl Can campaign and now the foundation is seeking more everyday women to come on board as ambassadors.

Four women recording their stories and looking into a webcam

This Girl Can – Victoria, which features real local women instead of professional athletes or airbrushed Instagram models, has led to an incredible one in five Victorian women increasing their physical activity since the campaign launched in March 2018.

In an effort to inspire even more women to get active, VicHealth will launch a new This Girl Can – Victoria ad early next year featuring more Victorian women. The foundation is on the hunt for a diverse range of women across the state to star in the new TV commercial and become ambassadors for the program.

Health Minister Jenny Mikakos encouraged Victorian women to share their stories of being active and overcoming judgement for the chance to become a This Girl Can – Victoria ambassador and feature in the new ad.

“This Girl Can – Victoria is all about empowering women to smash the stereotypes about what they can and can’t do in the gym, on the sporting field or in our neighbourhoods. We want all women to feel comfortable in getting active however, whenever or wherever they choose,” Minister Mikakos said.

“Embarrassment or a fear of being judged shouldn’t be a barrier in improving your physical and mental health – it’s great to see this campaign’s success in combatting this.”

VicHealth Acting CEO Dr Lyn Roberts AO said the campaign’s phenomenal results showed the power of seeing ‘real’ everyday women getting active.

“It’s brilliant to see that one in five Victorian women have been inspired by the campaign to set aside their fears of judgement and intimidation to get more active,” Dr Roberts said.

“Before the campaign, our research showed more than half of Victorian women were worried about being judged while exercising – for 41 per cent this fear of embarrassment was so bad it stopped them from getting out and active.

“Now almost 90 per cent of women who’ve seen the campaign feel it’s helped women increase their confidence and overcome their fear of being judged when being active.

“You can’t be what you can’t see. This Girl Can – Victoria is the opposite of “fitspo” influencers who make us feel like we’re not good enough. The women in our campaign are real people with real life fears and struggles. Women relate to them and think if she can – so can I!”

Dr Roberts encouraged women who’ve felt intimidated or judged when being active to share their story to help others enjoy the benefits of being active.

“We want to hear from women who’ve ever felt intimidated to join a sports team or were worried about being heckled going for a jog in the park, but who now stare down their inner and actual critics and get active anyway,” she said.

“Your experiences can help inspire other women to discover the incredible benefits of being active – we want to create a Victoria where every woman truly can.”

All Victorian women have the opportunity to share their story to be part of the new This Girl Can – Victoria campaign, with the chance to feature in the television advertisements which will air in early 2020.

Women can submit their stories and find out more at www.thisgirlcan.com.au.

Watch the original This Girl Can – Victoria.

Local case studies, interviews and images available on request.

For editors:

This Girl Can – Victoria is a six-year VicHealth campaign aiming to increase physical activity among Victorian women. It focuses on less active women, and supports gender equality by challenging traditional gender roles and stereotypes in sport and by celebrating women in this space.

This Girl Can – Victoria is the local implementation of the original ‘This Girl Can’ campaign in England, which is owned and operated by the English Sports Council (Sport England). Sport England used National Lottery funding to create the This Girl Can campaign in 2015.

VicHealth is the first organisation in the world to license the campaign from Sport England. VicHealth is promoting This Girl Can – Victoria in partnership with a range of organisations and community groups across the state including high profile sporting codes, sporting clubs and charities.

Key stats:

  • More than 396,000 Victorian women were more active after seeing the campaign
  • This Girl Can – Victoria inspired 1 in 5 women aged between 18-65 across the state to get more active
  • Almost 90% of women who saw the ad believe it helped women be more confident
  • 52% of Victorian women worry about being judged when exercising
  • 41% of Victorian women are too embarrassed or intimidated to get active
  • More than half of Victorian women are not sufficiently active, participating in less than 30 minutes of physical activity on four or more days a week
  • One in ten don’t do any physical activity in a week
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