Shinpads and Hijabs

On Wednesday 28 July, 2010 more than 100 female students from the Islamic College of Brisbane at Karawatha participated in small sided football games as part of Football United’s brand new program to hit Queensland. Football United’s partnered with Youth Without Borders and a number of other organisations to assist in the delivery of the Shinpads & Hijabs program, including Football Queensland, Brisbane Roar Football Club and the Australian Sports Commission.

Shinpads & Hijabs was funded through Multicultural Affairs Queensland in the Department of Communities and National Action Plan funding from the Department of Immigration and Citizenship.

The program, which focused on empowering Muslim women to coach and deliver their own football games was coordinated by football enthusiast and Young Queenslander of the Year 2010, Yassmin Abdel-Magied. In addition the program built links between the Islamic College of Brisbane and other local education Centres, by providing footballing opportunities to girls from other institutions, hosted at the ICB.

Inspiration and mentoring was provided by Brisbane Roar Westfield W-League players as part of the club’s ongoing commitment to cultural diversity through the Queensland Roars Against Racism partnership. Islamic College of Brisbane Principal, Dr Mubarak Noor said the female student body was enjoyed the opportunity to learn more about football and to participate in a safe and culturally sensitive environment.

“Sports and recreational activities in Australia are not always inclusive to the needs of young women from diverse backgrounds, and many barriers exist that limit opportunities for young Muslim women in participate in organised sport activities”

“Having women from within our own community develop the skills necessary to coach our young women is a great step towards increasing the number of girls who play organised sport. Equally the commitment of the project partners such as Football Queensland and Brisbane Roar FC working to address participation barriers will result in positive outcomes all round,” he said.