Female leaders of Moreland

Once a month Active Moreland profiles a female playing a vital leadership role at her club. To see how Moreland Council is supporting females in sport, see our Active Women and Girls Strategy.

Athena Babo (April 2019)

This month, we'd love you to meet Pascoe Vale Football Club’s Athena Babo!

Athena Babo

Athena (nee Tona) Babo’s family are founding members of the Pascoe Vale Football Club since 1966 and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Athena grew up with the club that is really her second home.

Involved as the Secretary for the last six years, Athena’s role extends well beyond this as she also lists her titles as Administrator, Media/Social Media Manager and Marketing/Sponsorship Coordinator. 

Athena comes from a family that is very community driven. When the club was promoted to Football Victoria’s National Premier League in 2013, Athena re committed to the club where she has been able to assist with the growth to ensure the club remains at this level for many years to come.

Her role at the club involves many from Secretary, liaising with Council, liaising with Football Victoria, updating social media and websites and assisting to run events. These roles involve reliable, regular communication and the ability to think and act in the best interests of the sport, club and community.

 Athena lists one of the greatest success as achieving the Football Victoria 5 Star Club Award in 2018, the only NPL 1 Club to win the Award.

Of course, another great success was defending human rights in the recent #SaveHakeem case which was the first in the world and first for Australian Football. Hakeem al-Araibi is part of the Pascoe Vale FC family and when detained in Thailand, Athena worked for 19hours a day to lobbying on behalf of Hakeem and his family to bring him home – on top of her other roles!

Athena lists #SaveHakeem and achieving the 5 Star Club rating as two of her proudest moments.

We asked Athena why the community should join Pascoe Vale FC: ‘As a club, we are focused on the community with our mission to be the best NPL Club in Victoria and Youth Football.’ Athena says they are at the forefront of inclusion and diversity and believe in humanity and what is right for their members.

Think you also have the skills to support your club? Ask your own club committee to see how you can help! Like and Follow Pascoe Vale Football Club on social media to stay updated. 

Abbie Storer (March 2019)

This month, we'd love you to meet Coburg Districts FC Coach Abbie Storer!

Abbie Storer

It’s always an honour to be tapped on the shoulder and asked to take on a role at a club and that’s exactly what happened to Abbie Storer. The President of the Coburg Districts Football Club knew she had the skills to get involved in the All Girls Auskick and since then, Abbie’s involvement has snowballed. Abbie feels like the club is her home away from home after growing up watching her Dad play nearly 500 games there.

Abbie is a coach and the Female Football Coordinator which encompasses a lot of different tasks and activities, including coach development, sitting on the Junior Committee, researching and writing grant applications, sourcing sponsorships, liaising with council and other community members, organising and running clinics in schools, recruiting new players/families, and promoting the club, particularly the female junior and senior programs.

The Female Football Program has been a real success so far, with many dedicated and enthusiastic people supporting girls and women to play footy. In the last two years, the club has generated an All Girls Auskick Group, an Under 9, Under 11 and Under 13 girls teams, as well as a Senior Women’s team – all club firsts.

Abbie insists she doesn’t do it all on her own and is well supported by players, parents and club members to coordinate the program. Abbie’s hope is to build a sustainable Female Football Program that serves the families and community of Moreland and surrounds for many years to come. She wants Coburg Districts FC to be synonymous with girls and women’s footy.

Abbie says Coburg Districts FC make footy fun and accessible for all. Club members work together to create a safe and inclusive space for our diverse community to enjoy team sport, make new friends and develop their leadership skills.

Think you also have the skills to support your club? Ask your own club committee to see how you can help! Like and Follow Coburg Distircts Football Club on social media to stay updated. 

Robyn Thomas (February 2019)

Administrator at Brunswick Zebras Football Club - Robyn Thomas

Robyn Thomas

This month, we'd love you to meet the Administrator at Brunswick Zebras Football Club - Robyn Thomas

If you are involved in soccer (football) in Moreland, you will have heard of Robyn Thomas. Robyn is the Club Administrator at the Brunswick Zebras Football Club, a role she has held for the past five years. Robyn started helping out about 12 years ago when her kids started playing.

As with all local community clubs, Brunswick Zebras is a volunteer run club.  All committee members have various duties but to summarise Robyn’s, she plays to her administration strengths and manages the initial registration of all club players, ensuring they have appropriate team clothing and that players and teams get on the field to play soccer.

To do this, Robyn uses her friendly and approachable personality to work with various families, Football Victoria, Councils and other interested parties to ensure their needs are met. Robyn also looks after the administration for the three pavilions the club use, from ensuring electricity bills are paid and that the phone doesn’t get switched off, canteens are well stocked and baristas/catering staff are available. 

Robyn admits it’s full on and quite challenging at the best of times, however she likes knowing that systems are in place to ensure that everyone is welcomed to the club and can play or watch the soccer game. 

Robyn believes the games should run smoothly and efficiently and all other issues are managed and controlled so that the kids only have to concentrate on the enjoyment of playing the game, and parents can cheer from the sidelines. It’s why they joined up in the first place she says!

Brunswick Zebras FC welcomes all those who come along and simply want to play. They want to encourage the younger generation to become part of a community, learn new skills, be active and socialise with others who have the same interests.

It's a chance to meet new people and make friends for life whilst enjoying and having fun at game that they love. Families also get the opportunity to attend club trivia nights and other fundraiser activities run by the club. The skills Robyn has allowed her to contribute to the club operations spending time with her kids at a sport they love.

Think you also have the skills to take on an administration role at your club? Like and Follow Brunswick Zebras Football Club on social media to stay updated. Ask your own club committee to see how you can help!

Grace O'Brien (January 2019)

This month, we'd love you to meet the President of the Fawkner Netball Club - Grace O'Brien. 

Grace O'Brien

Grace has held the role of President for 12 months and has been instrumental to get the club up and running. As an active volunteer on both the football and cricket committees, Grace was tapped on the shoulder and asked by the cricket club President on behalf of the Fawkner North Coburg Sports Association to set up the netball club to provide the service to its families with daughters not wishing to play girls football or cricket.

We asked Grace where her initial interest came from to be part of the club, “My three daughters. They really wanted to play netball, especially after seeing the courts being built at Charles Mutton Reserve.” Initially the committee thought that they would get two junior teams to play in 2019 and start NetSetGo mid 2019 – but they’re expectations have been exceeded and Fawkner Netball Club will start 2019 with four junior teams, one senior team, one mixed team and a NetSetGo Program starting on February 2 – and the club is very welcoming of new players.    

Grace’s role as President is to oversee operations of the club, liaise with netball associations, players and families, seek sponsorship, recruit players and coaches. It’s also to build and maintain positive working relationships with players, families, community groups, schools, other sporting clubs at the Charles Mutton Reserve sporting precinct and Moreland Council.

Grace balances life as a working mum of three kids with her role as President and in a short space of time has experienced success at the club.

Think you also have the skills to take on a leadership role at your club? Like Fawkner Netball Club on social media to stay updated. Ask your own club committee to see how you can help!

Further information

We have a list of resources to help you engage and retain female leaders into your club.

The Fawkner Lesiure Centre pool and aquatics area is closed for maintenance from 6 May to mid June.