Female Coaching
Media Release

AFL Vic launches Female Coaching Academy

Former AFLW player Sally Riley is a coaching success story. Here coaching the Vic Country U18 Girls in 2022 and is now the coach of the GWV Rebels Girls in the Coates Talent League
AFL Victoria has launched its Female Coaching Academy, in partnership with BHP, aimed at attracting more female coaches into community football. 

The first edition of the Female Coaching Academy is set to start in November this year and conclude in March 2024. The program will be piloted in three regions – Barwon, South East and the Western Region Football League - and target women and girls between the ages of 15-20. 

Participants will experience five practical workshops delivered by AFL Victoria Coach Developers in each region involved. Upon completion of the tailored program, each participant will receive a Foundation (Level One) Coach Accreditation. 

Following the workshops, coaches will be given the opportunity to transition into a community club coaching role and will receive a match day experience in the coaches box at an AFLW game. Program costs will be covered by AFL Victoria.

The academy is built on modern coaching practices and will be tailored towards attracting women and girls who are currently playing or involved in the game, or other sports, but haven’t previously been involved in coaching Australian football.

Expressions of interest can be submitted here. Offers for the program will be distributed at the end of October.

AFL Victoria State Coaching Manager, Jennifer Taffs, said the program is part of AFL Victoria’s strategic aim of growing the female coaching talent pool in community football.

“Women and girls football has gone through a major transformation and growth phase since the inception of the AFLW competition in 2017, yet female coaching numbers haven’t kept pace with the growth of playing participation.

“The Female Coaching Academy, which will be piloted in three regions at the end of 2023 and early next year ahead of the 2024 football season, has a very specific aim of developing more coaching talent and helping aspiring coaches progress into coaching roles in community football.

“I would like to thank BHP for their support of the Female Coaching Academy in Victoria and their ongoing commitment towards women and girls football through a range of programs.”

Of the nearly 12,000 community football coaches currently registered in Victoria, just under 900 are female and the Female Coaching Academy is one initiative that has been designed to help grow this number.


AFL commits to major uplift in community football investment and driving participation for women and girls
In a sign of its commitment towards supporting community football, in 2022 the AFL announced a major increase in community football investment, with a minimum 10 per cent of the game's annual assessable revenue enshrined to go towards game development and community football from 2023 onwards.

As part of this commitment, last year the AFL approved more than $5 million in new investment to fund phase one of the 2022 Women and Girls Action Plan, designed to drive participation and representation for women and girls across all aspects of community football from playing to coaching, umpiring and administering.

AFL and BHP extend their commitment to changing the game
The AFL and BHP partnership was recently extended until the end of 2025, having commenced in 2020. The partnership builds on the two organisations’ shared ambitions to improve opportunity and equality in both business and sport and focuses on enhancing the impact in gender diversity. BHP is a major supporter of several key coaching programs including:

o The BHP AFL Women's Coaching Academy
o BHP Community Coach of the Year Award
o AFLW Player to Coach Programs
o She Can Coach National Program, presented by BHP
o Women's Coaching Month, presented by BHP