Today we would like to highlight and acknowledge two more local Women’s major Club Committee Members: Kelli Halling (Balgownie Juniors) and Jordan Van De Voorde (Woonona).
Jordan Van De Voorde (pictured RIGHT) is a proud member of Woonona Junior Football Club.
She has played for the club for 21 years and has also been a part of the committee and coaching staff.
Jordan was the main contact for the women’s sides in 2018 and 2019 and she is currently the secretary of the club and is also an assistant coach for one of the junior girl’s teams.
It was from a young age that Jordan felt strongly about the positive power of having females involved in football.
“When I started playing in under-9s our team was unique in the fact that 7 out of our 11 players were girls,” she said.
“Those same girls stuck together (and more were added on along the way) and most of us went through all the way to under-18s as part of the first wave of girls graded teams to play under the Football South Coast banner.”
“We all motivated each other along the way to stay involved in the sport, and whilst we played for the fun and the challenge, I think we also saw it as important for younger girls to see older girls continuing to play the game as well.”
Jordan believes that one of the best contributions female players can have for the sport is to conduct themselves in a way that encourages people to consider football to be of an equal importance.
“I feel as though I have tried to live by this, as well as to develop a positive and active presence around the club so that other females might feel inspired to become involved as well,” she explained.
“I love the concept of Female Football Week. I think anything that highlights and celebrates the contributions of female players, committee and council members and promotes the game to young females has to be a positive thing.”
Women’s football in the Illawarra is getting stronger due to the involvement of many selfless women working hard behind the scenes and Jordan is proud to be a part of such a great environment and has helped changed the way male and females perceive football and has inspired players to continue joining the sport.
Another female who has supported and been involved with football is Kelli Halling (pictured LEFT), who has been a part of Balgownie Juniors for over 10 years.
In 2012, she became involved with the canteen rostering before she took on the referee coordinator role.
In 2015, she also became the secretary for the club and has been in this role ever since.
Kelli has also looked after the gear and merchandise for the club – the female match day strips.
“Three years ago we put in for government funding to contribute to half of the costs for playing strips for our women’s teams, so it wasn’t a stock standard male playing shirt. We wanted a nice fitting strip for our female’s so they could feel comfortable,” Kelli said.
Kelli also agrees and supports the concept of Female Football Week and is proud to be a part of such an amazing sport and community.
“I think it is such a positive thing for our community,” she said.
“I haven’t been prepared for it this year but last year I was out taking photos for the teams and the players as I just love promoting that and in terms of the game, I think we are seeing particularly in the younger ages that we are getting more only girls’ teams.”
“Just a couple of years ago a club proposed to bring in an all-girls team for the under-8s competition and was successful. Last year we also had two under-7s teams and two under-11s all-girls teams – it’s amazing.”
Her love for the game has been the main reason why Kelli has surrounded herself with football.
She has worked well with the committee and has previously taken photos each week of the junior teams to give them a sense of appreciation.
“It is great to see we can prove an all girls team competition, it’s a great way to recognise all of the female talent out there and I hope this is something that can continue to grow,” she said.
Both Jordan and Kelli have given their helping hand and have shown nothing but support for the female football community – we thank you for that.
Story by Alison Dinh, on Twitter @alisondinh_