Australia’s first Women and Girls Chartered Umpire Association

The Newcastle Central Coast Umpires Association (NCCUA) has become the first in Australia to be recognised as a Women and Girls Chartered Umpiring Association.

The region is thriving in the umpiring sector of the sport, and women and girls are at the forefront. Since 2022, there has been a 37.1 per cent increase in women and girl umpire participation across the AFL Hunter Central Coast.

One in five registered umpires officiating in the AFL Hunter Central Coast are women or girls.

The NCCUA has a strong culture of fostering women and girls to be their best. Led by its President, Rachel Robinson, who is also an Coach, the NCCUA actively promotes gender diversity within the association.

Christine Burrows is the Head Coach of Umpiring in the HCC region. With 13 years of involvement in the region, she has been instrumental in mentoring and supporting new umpires, particularly women. Her extensive experience and commitment to the sport makes her a pivotal figure in encouraging more women to take up umpiring roles. Christine regularly attends training sessions, ensuring she remains up-to-date with the latest umpiring techniques and rules which she passes on to new recruits.

Together, Christine and Rachel’s regular attendance at training sessions, their mentoring efforts, and their leadership roles create a supportive environment for women umpires to thrive in the NCCUA

Talented HCC umpire, Zarli Mertens

The Women and Girls Community Football Charter is a commitment from clubs or associations to work towards making their environments welcoming, safe and inclusive for women and girls.

The charter sets out the expectation that clubs will champion women and girls and will be guided by four principles:

  • – Opportunity
  • – Visibility
  • – Access
  • – Investment

Because they are chartered, the Newcastle Central Coast Umpiring Association will now receive the following:

  • – Correspondence on women and girls’ initiatives, grants, and opportunities.
  • – Favourable consideration when assessing applications for AFL based funding initiatives that relate to women and girls.
  • – Recognition via the AFL Play website with an opportunity for the club to be showcased.
  • – A Women & Girls Community Football Charter poster which can be publicly displayed in the club, acknowledging the Bats’ commitment.
  • – A suite of digital assets that can be used on the Bats’ website, socials, and advertising.