Posted in Featured News , Female Football , Front Page News , People of the SMJFL , Uncategorised


Today is International Women’s Day, and we at the SMJFL would like to take this opportunity to extend our gratitude to all the great female contributors to Australian Football.

Thank you to all SMJFL match day volunteers and contributors – the canteen ladies, the goal umpires, the umpire escorts, the runners, the trainers, the coaches and the water carriers. You all do an amazing job and our Sundays simply wouldn’t go ahead without your time, effort and expertise.

Thank you to all SMJFL players and umpires. You girls continue to dazzle us with your tremendous skill, judgement and commitment and we hope to see some of you in the national competition in the years to come. You are the life blood of our competition

Thank you to all the women that hold off-field football administration roles at the SMJFL clubs. The presidents, secretaries, treasures and committee members are the ones that ensure that the clubs remain afloat and give our kids a safe and inclusive environment to play footy and frankly should get a lot more recognition for the mountain of work you put in to your clubs.

Scroll down to read a news story on Caulfield Bears JFC President Louise Nelson as featured in this week’s Caulfield Glen Eira Leader.

And finally, thank you to the trail-blazing women that pioneered women’s involvement in top-flight football. Women like Peta Searle (St Kilda FC assistant coach), Daisy Pearce (Melbourne FC player), Peggy O’Neill (Richmond FC President) and Beverley O’Connor (former Melbourne FC board member) have all challenged the patriarchy that previously existed in elite-level football, and paved the women for women to take up non-traditional roles within AFL clubs. It’s mould-breakers and trendsetters like these women that have smashed long-standing gender stereotypes and contributed to the current groundswell of support for female football competitions.



by Holly McKay, Caulfield Glen Eira Leader


A JUNIOR football club in Melbourne’s inner south has, for the first time, appointed a woman as its president and will field an all girls team.

Louise Nelson is the president of the Caulfield Bears Junior Football Club, and is the first female to take on the role since the club was founded in 1961.

And, in a push to level out the playing field, the Caulfield Bears Junior Football Team is starting an all girls team.

Nelson, a mother of two, has been involved with the Caulfield Bears for the past three years after deciding to get involved with the sport her boys were interested in.

“Being a mother of boys I thought if I didn’t get involved with their activities I would turn around in five to 10 years and not have anything in common with them,” Mrs Nelson said.

She said she joined the club as a first aid trainer before becoming a committee member.

Mrs Nelson said being part of the club was “a whole family affair” with both boys, Harry, 10, and Charles, 8 playing and husband Adrian coaching.

“From 7.30am on a Sunday to whenever it finishes the family are down at the park,” she said.

“So many people are involved with the club, often it’s whole families.

“It would be easy to send them off to football and I go shopping but I wanted something we could all do together.”

The Caulfield resident said while it was a “privilege” to be the first female president she hoped it wouldn’t be all she was recognised for.

“I want to be known for what we’ve achieved, not just for being a woman,” she said.

“I want to make sure we are a family friendly and welcoming club and are achieving the goals we have in place and strive for excellence. Our all girls team is one of those goals.

“I’m definitely excited for the year ahead. We have a whole range of projects on the go including new lights, new sponsors coming on board — there’s a lot to be excited about.”


Click here to read the full LEADER article