Health & wellbeing programs

Champions of the West

Improving equality and respect on and off the footy field

Champions of the West is a partnership between GenWest, the Western Bulldogs Football Club, the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation, and Women’s Health Grampians, with support from the Western Football Netball League.

We collaborate to promote safe, respectful and inclusive cultures in footy clubs in the west by harnessing the power of footy communities to prevent gender-based violence.


We recognise the power and value of sport in shifting and creating more inclusive communities. Sporting clubs can champion cultures that advance gender equality, contribute to healthier communities and help prevent gender-based violence.

Champions of the West are working with sports-affiliated groups, local community clubs, professional athletes, and club administration to harness the influence of football in Melbourne’s west and improve the lives of women, girls and gender diverse people in sports culture.

Through Champions of the West, we provide workshops for club staff, leaders, players and umpires. Workshops include education on:

  • the links between gender inequality and gender-based violence
  • the importance of respectful and inclusive clubs
  • the impacts of gender stereotypes
  • consent and respectful relationships
  • being an active bystander to prevent gender-based violence

It is a funded program under Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Preventing Violence Through Sports Grants Program.

Funding boost: Addressing Family Violence Through Sport

Minister for Prevention of Family Violence Vicki Ward and Minister for Community Sport Ros Spence announced on 23 May $1.2 million boost finding through the Preventing Violence Through Sports Grants program for the continuation of 12 community-based sporting projects across the state.

GenWest is thrilled to accept this funding boost to continue our preventing violence through sport project, Champions of the West. Find out more.

Level the Playing Field for Gender Equality

We've been running sessions alongside Tom Boyd, former Western Bulldogs premiership player, for footy clubs in the western suburbs of Melbourne.

Footy club workshop

We designed a youth zine and poster to hand out at workshops. Download a copy for yourself below.

Download resources

Some things people have told us after attending a workshop

  • "[I learned] to not just call out the unfair and sexist terms, to make sure you continually support and hold your arms around those that are impacted, rather than just asking if they're okay and moving on."
  • "[The most important thing I will take away is] that we can do more as an organisation to stand up and actively engage in gender equality."
  • "We will revisit our Parental Leave Policy and remove any gendered language and assumptions and ensure that barriers are removed for men (or non-birthing partners) to take primary careers leave."
  • "[After the session, we'll] be able to stand up and represent a leading voice on behalf of the community in this space."

Contact us

Call us

1800 436 937

Email us

Visit us

317-319 Barkly Street


Naarm/Melbourne VIC 3011

More info
Hand with GenWest local government areas