Zainab Goreja 1

Zainab Goreja | Student

This girl has surpassed the visions once seen by a small, feisty girl 3 years ago. Her determination to play the sport of cricket and set an example for others has dumbfounded many around her. Facing cultural AND gender barriers, she has worked her way into recognition with her keen passion and natural talent. She has taken and accepted responsibility many times as a member of the schools cricket team (Carlton Bolling girls), launching us into our first ever Yorkshire final with her bowling skills and eve has one on to have an extremely successful season with the West Yorkshire women’s district squad – taking over 20 wickets and being invited to play for a club. She has even been invited to play for the Yorkshire Women’s super two’s event, also taking a few wickets in the process, despite playing in the u15’ category being 13 last year.  She continues to defy any opposition, fighting through the daily struggles of cultural issues with the family and gender issues also coming into play in the argument. Yet, she still continues the struggle, helping the school team win yet another Yorkshire title as vice captain and committing herself to the game to help others do the same.  She has now become a coach, guiding the younger years with her experience and helping them to reach the same level of sportsmanship and cricket as the current team have now after 3 years. If inspiration a physical substance, you would see a rainbow hue of mist surround her, swirling around the other girls as she disperses her experience and knowledge gained over the course of a long, rough 3 years. 3 years of excruciating pain and tormenting hardship, which is finally being paid back now through the recognition we are finally receiving.

Victoria Knowles-Lacks | The Shotgun & Chelsea Bun Club

Victoria Knowles-Lacks is 33 and lives on the Worcestershire/Shropshire Border with her husband Keiran and Lakeland Terrier, Rocket.

Victoria, who has been named the ‘Pioneer’ of the clay shooting industry is on a mission to get as many ladies as she possibly can involved in the sport of clay shooting, whilst empowering women and instilling support and confidence. She has created a sisterhood of loyal, go getting ladies who all share a common love, clay shooting and the Countryside.

Getting increasingly despondent in her role in property and day dreaming about being out in the field, Victoria one day decided enough was enough and handed in her notice. With nothing in the way of savings, she threw caution in to the wind and left, with a big dream to set up a really fun and inclusive ladies only clay shooting club, that would get women out supporting each other, being out in the Countryside and just having some 'me' time.

The Shotgun & Chelsea Bun Club was formed in September 2011 and is now the largest ladies clay shooting club in Europe. The Club holds in excess of 100 events Nationally, where women from all age groups and backgrounds are welcome. Their days are really social and are a really fun introduction in to clay shooting, where ladies learn to clay shoot, with qualified coaching, and then finish off the day with homemade cakes, served in gorgeous old vintage china. The Club has gained a National following, including with big name organisations and in the National press. Victoria has been named one of the top 5 most influential people in shooting, she and her club have won numerous awards.

Since it’s formation the Club has welcomed some 10,000+ ladies into the sport. They run a National calendar of events, training days, alongside their socials and their game changing National Ladies’ Shooting Day, which is being held on 10th June and will see well in excess of 1,000 ladies taking aim and getting involved!

Victoria’s plans for the future are ‘to keep on going! To keep doing what we’re doing and grow – hopefully taking it Global!’


Charlotte-Richardson

Charlotte Richardson | K-Sports Cobdown

Whilst studying English Literature at King’s College London I edited the Student Union paper Roar! and volunteered as Media Manager of Gillingham Ladies FC. I grew both team’s profiles and drove a strategy to professionalise both organisations. In regard to Gillingham Ladies, I secured a formal relationship with Gillingham FC, facilitating players playing home games at a professional stadium and no longer paying to play.

On graduation, I worked as Head of Media at my Student Union alongside the Gillingham role developing my skills in marketing and media. After a three-month internship at Peabody, I secured the role of Marketing and Communications Officer at the Kent Football Association.

Balancing paid and volunteering roles, I helped drive the grassroots game and association’s strategy to invest, grow and govern Kent football. I led Kent FA’s marketing and communications strategy, growing its brand and commercial value, securing their largest sponsorship deal.

Headhunted by Gillingham FC, as Head of Marketing and Communications, I undertook a range of responsibilities supporting the club’s entire player pathway structure. I brought a more innovative approach to fan engagement and PR, launching a new sub-brand for the club’s commercial and corporate operations whilst there too.

Following this, I joined the charity Women in Sport. Another varied role helping transform sport for the benefit of every woman and girl in the UK.

In 2016, I founded the Eighth Wonder programme to create football’s future female leaders, targeting 14-20-year-olds.  My first cohort ’graduate’ this summer.

I now work at Women in Sport part time alongside being Head of Marketing and Communications at K Sports Cobdown, a 2.8-acre multi-sport facility in Kent. I sit on the Kent Youth League Committee, Kent FA Equality Advisory Group, contribute to Offside Rule Pod and BBC Radio Kent. I also volunteered at the Rugby World Cup, England Netball Quad Series and hope to do so again at the upcoming London 2017 Athletics Championships.


rhia o'reilly

Rhia O'Reilly | Professional Wrestler

I am the current champion and face of London based female professional wrestling organisation Pro Wrestling Eve. Originally from Northern Ireland, I completed training in both England and Canada and then I found a home in London and have been living there since. I have wrestled for promotions across the UK as well as in Europe and the US and Canada. I have helped to build a wrestling scene which accepts women as part of their roster and have helped inspire more women to take up wrestling and go above and beyond what they have ever expected. I currently continue to promote equality for women and all humans both through wrestling for companies such as Pro Wrestling Eve as well as using that platform to fundraise and support charities here in the UK and abroad.

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Kare Adenegan | British Paralympic Association

I am a GB Elite Paralympian athlete (age 16 yrs). I was the youngest member of the GB wheelchair racing team and represented Team GB in the 100, 400 and 800 metres. I am grateful to whoever nominated me for this award. I feel really privileged and blessed for being nominated for what I consider to be a minor achievement in comparison to what most people do.