63% of Irish people want sportswomen to be seen as heroes

According to research from Nielsen, 63 percent of people want to see Ireland's sportswomen honoured as national heroes in the same way as sportsmen.

Irish journalism focused on women in sport is in dire need of improvement, and today Investec has launched it's inaugural 20×20 Media Awards to recognise excellence in this field.

The 20×20 Nielsen Sports Study found that just a shocking three percent of print and four percent of online coverage was dedicated to women’s sport in Ireland: it's time for improvements.

The Federation of Irish Sport presented Investec as a sponsor for 20×20 in order to provide more support for women in sport.

Greater cultural recognition is one way to start; broadcast, print and online journalists are being invited to submit entries on women in sport to it's latest awards competition.

Investec has curated an expert panel of judges for their 2019 Media Awards;

Anna Kessel as chairwoman; Mary O’Connor, CEO of the Federation of Irish Sport; Michael Cullen, CEO of Investec; Sarah Colgan, CEO of  Along Came A Spider and 20×20 co-founder and Gordon D’Arcy, former Irish International rugby player.

Nielsen Sports were commisioned by 20×20 to monitor media coverage of sport, which resulted in quite discouraging statistics. 

20×20 has estimated television coverage of women's sport is less than 12 percent, and 59 percent of Irish people believe that the media should do more to promote female sport.

57 percent of people want to see equality in female and male sporting role models in the media, and 63 percent of the public would love to see Irish women being given the same 'national hero' status as men.

Anna Kessel, chairwoman of Investec 20×20 Awards said: “In celebrating women's sports journalism the Investec 20×20 Media Awards are sending out a very powerful message: women's sport is amazing, and of value."

"For every sports editor who's ever wondered if it's worth covering; to every coach who questioned whether girls needed encouraging, and to every sports’ governing body deliberating over how much to invest in their female athletes this year, this initiative makes it clear: women's sport matters."

The objective of 20×20 is to increase the level of coverage of women’s sport across media by 20 percent by the end of 2020, according to its founder, Sarah Colgan.

Gowan girlos, you deserve a medal. Like Katie Taylor-sized medal. Multiple medals, actually…

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