Tynesha Lewis, Elizabeth City State University

The WNBA And Voice In Sport Launch Groundbreaking Initiative To Empower Girls And Women In Sports

The partnership will provide services for over 50,000 girls in sports, including mentorships.

On Feb. 7, National Girls and Women in Sports Day, the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), and Voice In Sport (VIS) unveiled a community partnership in cooperation with the WNBA Changemaker Collective. The collaboration aims to support girls in sports, fostering leadership on the court and beyond it.

VIS, a digital platform founded by women, and the WNBA Changemakers, who include AT&T, CarMax, Deloitte, Google, Nike, and U.S. Bank, are committed to instigating positive change within the sports industry for girls and women, Fast Company reports.

Colie Edison, chief growth officer at the WNBA, described the significance of the partnership. “The WNBA Changemaker Collective is a powerful group of purpose-driven organizations with a steadfast mission to empower underrepresented groups, girls, and women through the power of sport. In teaming up with Voice In Sport, we are excited to extend our impact by engaging even more girls and women in sport and building a supportive environment for the next generation of leaders.”

The WNBA Changemakers, in collaboration with the VIS platform, aim to provide services for over 50,000 girls in sports. To that end, VIS announced that 12 WNBA players will serve as VIS mentors to give younger players accelerated access to role models. The WNBA stars include Ariel Atkins, Aliyah Boston, Alysha Clark, Natasha Cloud, Izzy Harrison, Lexie Hull, Betnijah Laney-Hamilton, Haley Jones, Nneka Ogwumike, Satou Sabally, Erica Wheeler, and Katie Lou Samuelson.

The WNBA’s partnership with VIS will start this month, delivering services to thousands of girls in sports across the United States. The initiative, supported by the WNBA Changemakers, marks a pioneering effort as the first professional league to invest in virtual mentoring and educational content at scale for young female athletes. Throughout the year, the VIS platform and 12 WNBA VIS mentors will conduct more than 144 live virtual mentoring sessions.

Stef Strack, founder and CEO of VIS, spoke about the goals of the initiative. “To keep girls in sport, we need to fundamentally rethink the ecosystem and support athletes holistically,” she said. “We need more visibility for professional women athletes and experts in sport psychology, nutrition, and sport science. At Voice In Sport, we are creating the services and content we all wish we had when we were young athletes. I’m proud that we now have incredible partners through the WNBA and the WNBA Changemakers just as eager to make change happen in this space as we are.”

Ariel Atkins of the Washington Mystics, who is serving as a VIS mentor, emphasized the importance of role models, stating, “In order for girls to stay in sports, it’s essential that they have role models to look up to and guide them throughout the way. I’m honored to be that for so many girls through the Voice In Sport mentorship platform. Not only am I looking forward to giving advice and relief to the unique challenges that women athletes experience, but I’m equally excited to celebrate their joy and wins with them and be a reminder that they can achieve incredible things in their sport.”

The collaborative effort reflects the WNBA Changemakers’ commitment to advancing underrepresented groups, girls, and women through impactful initiatives. Its partnership with VIS aligns with its broader goals and is a pivotal step toward creating a world where girls and women are highly valued in the global sports landscape.