Electric Ireland has been unveiled as the new lead sponsor of women’s football in Northern Ireland.
The partnership aims to boost female football participation rates across Northern Ireland with Electric Ireland the Official Sponsor of the UEFA Women’s Under 19 Championship 2017, which takes place in August, and the Girls’ Post Primary Schools Football and Schools Cup.
The partnership deal also sees Electric Ireland become the Official Energy Partner to The National Football Stadium at Windsor Park and the Official Energy Partner of Northern Ireland Football.
To support the sponsorship, Electric Ireland announced details of its campaign Game Changers, which will break down the perceptions that exist around women’s football, celebrate female football talent and most importantly help boost participation rates beyond the current 10,000 Game Changers who currently play football each week across Northern Ireland.
This will include elements of TV and Radio advertising as well as social media and is part of the growing trend towards true partnership where a brands strength in terms of broad reach to a community can be harnessed for the good of a part of sport that has not previously broken through into mainstream media.
It is similar in that sense to the Lidl partnership with Ladies Gaelic Football and Littlewoods Ireland and Liberty Insurance with Camogie.
“We are delighted to announce our exciting partnership with The Irish Football Association to be the lead sponsor of women’s grassroots football across Northern Ireland supporting everything from summer camps to the elite and everything in between,” said Paul Stapleton, General Manager of Electric Ireland.
“We believe this partnership provides a Game Changing moment for women’s football.”
“It demonstrates our passionate commitment to the community and it is our ambition to inspire the next generation of female footballers during August’s UEFA Women’s Under 19 Championships and support the ambitious outreach to get more women playing football.”
“As a relatively new player in the energy market, Electric Ireland brings its experience of changing the game of the energy market in Northern Ireland and look forward to working in partnership with the Irish FA to bring Game Changers to life and bringing about positive change to women’s football.”
“This is a fantastic boost for women’s football in Northern Ireland,” added Northern Ireland Senior Women’s captain Marissa Callaghan.
“The women’s game is growing in popularity here and this support from Electric Ireland will undoubtedly help it to develop even further. It is an exciting partnership that will drive women’s football forward at every level in Northern Ireland.”
Guests who attended the launch also heard from Ireland’s oldest living female Olympian Maeve Kyle who spoke passionately in support of the Game Changers campaign.
“As one of sports original Game Changers it is an honour for me to attend today’s Electric Ireland and Irish FA partnership launch,” said the Ballymena resident.
“Today is about encouraging women from across Northern Ireland to give football a go and I will be cheering them on with all the passion of an Olympic athlete.”