Unlocked: Top sportswomen join Women’s Sport Trust drive for increased diversity

Elite competitors from across 27 sports have joined a charity initiative to improve diversity in sport after the pandemic.

The ‘Unlocked’ programme has been set up by the Women’s Sport Trust and will feature athletes such as footballers Caroline Weir and Nikita Parris and five-time Paralympic champion Hannah Cockroft.

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As part of the Unlocked group, the athletes will access experts from across the sport, business and media worlds, and the Women’s Sport Trust will hold workshops and provide opportunities to hear from industry insiders, as well as assigning athletes their own ‘activator’.

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Last year’s Unlocked programme proved to be significant, with four of the group taking positions on sporting boards including swimmer Lizzie Simmonds, the two-time Olympian who has recently been selected as the new chair of the British Olympic Association’s Athletes Commission, and GB Paralympian Vanessa Wallace, who has joined Sporting Equals as a trustee.

Tammy Parlour MBE, CEO and co-founder of the Women’s Sport Trust, said: “It has been a challenging year for many, but as we come out of Covid-19, there is no better time to turbo-charge our effort and continue to unlock the value of women’s sport.

“We believe the best way to do this is by supporting these elite women and connecting them together. Individually they are strong advocates for change but together they are unstoppable.”

Unlocked 2021 group: Ali Collins (tennis), Alice Masterman (sailing), Amber Keegan (swimming), Beth Partridge (athletics), Caroline Weir (football), Emma Wiggs (para-canoeing), Emily Appleton (tennis), Emily Currie (surfing), Francesca Jones (tennis), Hannah Burke (golf), Hannah Cockroft (wheelchair racing), Jenna Downing (skating), Jodie Cunningham (rugby league), Jodie Ounsley (rugby union), Jodie Williams (athletics), Kadeen Corbin (netball), Lauren Rowles (para-rowing), Lucy Shuker (wheelchair tennis), Melissa Wilson (rowing), Mhairi Maclennan (athletics), Montell Douglas (bobsleigh), Nabila Tejpar (motorsport), Nikita Parris (football), Panashe Muzambe (rugby union), Phoebe Graham (cricket), Robyn Love (wheelchair basketball), Ruth Mwandumba (shooting), Samantha Kinghorn (wheelchair racing), Sarah Evans (hockey), Sarah Jones (hockey), Shaunagh Brown (rugby union), Shelayna Oskan-Clarke (athletics), Stacey Francis (netball), Stef Twell (athletics), Yoana Yankova (gymnastics).

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