It was a day of action on the second day of the ICF Women’s Symposium. The day focused strongly on what changes all present could make on a personal level to change the global environment for women in paddlesports. This philosophy was embedded from the first speaker, with former ICF President José Perurena López, leaving the room with the message ‘You can too’, in reference to the example he has seen set by many of his female colleagues, including current Vice-president of the ICF Cecilia Farias.

Today’s panel on the positive impact of female coaches, featuring Nathalie Siegrist, Lorraine Lafreniere, Kim Crane, challenged the attitude to women in coaching at all levels.

Lochlann Walsh, OFI Gender Equality Commission Chair, delivered some clear and practical actions which we can take at all levels and walks of life to create equity in sport –

‘We need equity not equality and this means the system needs to change’

To finish the day and the Symposium actions were laid out around the 3 pillars of the Symposium ‘Change Locally, Change Globally, Change Together’. Again, these actions focused on the individual, how they can grow personally to help enact change, and how they can inspire change in their own country or community. We are honoured to have been part of this extremely positive step towards a better future for our sport, and are looking forward to seeing the International Canoe Federation continuing to provide more opportunities for women in Paddlesports.