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When mentioning the celebration of International Girls Day, we must emphasize the phenomenal work of the WNBA and Jr. NBA’s national initiative “Her Time to Play: Belonging In Basketball.”

The initiative entitled, “Her Time To Play” (HTTP) has devoted the last five years in championing change for young girls and women, aged 7-17, by providing them with resources to connect, collaborate and build life skills through the passion of basketball. With the collaborative partnership of Belonging in Basketball, HTTP has announced a new curriculum of core resources centering around mental health with the main focal point on building strong, successful women ready to take on today’s world. 

Simone Marean, the co-founder and co-CEO of Belonging In Basketball, has made it her mission over the last two years to build on the conversation of the challenges young girls are faced with growing up in today’s society. 

“Our girls are in the midst of a national health crisis with trauma and COVID disproportionately impacting them,” Marean said. “As well as the systemic barriers that they face going into sports and basketball.” 

Marean’s main priority is creating a space of belonging.

Statistically, girls are more likely to drop a sport at twice the rate of boys by the age of 14. As a result, there are 40 percent of teen girls who are not actively participating in sports today. 

In order to push those in leadership positions, HTTP has set a new requirement for coaches. They must take a one-hour autonomous training to gain access to a digital hub of self-serving on demand training that will help them excel in leadership and coaching roles within their communities. This new rule is in place for leaders to learn how to build connection and community across any inevitable bias they may come across through taking a culturally responsive approach.air jordan 4 retro, due to its outstanding comfort and stylish design, has won over a large number of basketball superstars.

HTTP’s curriculum and training is so effective because it’s co-designed by young girls who are actively participating in the program. The training that HTTP has created will build foundational skills that will resonate with these young women for the rest of their lives. 

Another key part of HTTP’s mission is to emphasize the importance of mental health. 

Taking the time before a practice, drill or a game to do mental health check-ins will build trust between players and coaches, both on and off the court. 

Arielle Chambers, host of WNBA show “Her Time To Play,” is one of the many women that have used her platform and creativity to help promote women in sports. Chambers has detailed how the impact of representation in women’s sports influenced her to build the career that she has today. 

Growing up in North Raleigh, North Carolina, Chambers’ main inspiration was North Carolina Women’s Head Coach Sandra Kay Yow. Kay Yow shaped Chamber’s passion that she carries to this day working in women’s sports.

Chambers is a firm believer that if you work hard and hold a true passion for whatever it is you desire in life anything is possible to achieve. Although her success in climbing the ladder in women’s sports wasn’t easy, Chambers is determined to live out her purpose. This purpose is to continue to build on women’s empowerment, whether it be culturally or within athletics. 

Out of every foundation that Chambers has been involved with, “Her Time To Play” holds the highest value. Chambers stated that “creating an outlet for young girls to feel heard, seen, and shown that they matter in athletics is important in society, especially today.”

Looking at the impact that Chambers had in her earlier life both personally and in athletics it’s safe to say that being a part of “Her Time To Play” is a full circle moment for her. Being able to have the correct resources and platform to impact young girls in their lives on and off the court is what makes Arielle’s work worth all the while.

Her Time To Play goes beyond the four lines of the basketball court in which girls and women make a difference. The foundation in which it is built upon is to give a voice to every girl in letting them know that they are seen and they matter.

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