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Monaghan Sports Council     Monaghan County Development Board

Girls In Action

Coaching tips at the Soccer skills programme in Cootehill
Girls in Action programme 2008

Girls in Action’ was the title given to this programme in County Monaghan which received funding through the Irish Sports Council, under it’s ‘Women in Sport’ initiative – which aims to target the increased participation of females in sport and physical activity across Ireland. ‘Women in Sport’ programmes take place all over the Country and have proven to be hugely successful in encouraging more girls and older women to become more active.


Research findings from the TAKE PART study (2007) and Health Behaviour of School Aged Children (2006) recommended targeting teenage girls as a priority group for the promotion of healthy lifestyle choices. Monaghan Sports Partnership secured funding from the Irish Sports Council’s ‘Women in Sport’ initiative supported by the Health Service Executive to run the ‘Girls in Action’ physical activity programme for the 2007-2008 school year.  The ‘Girls in Action’ programme provides a model of good practice which provides typically non active or non sporty teenage girls an opportunity to participate in physical activity and sport in a non-competitive way.  The experience of participating in this initiative helps those taking part develop a more positive attitude towards sport and physical activity.


Participants of six's Girls in Action SchoolsParticipants of six’s Girls in Action Schools who participated in the Sports Fest held in Ballybay held in May 2008 where archery, pilates, boxercise, salsa dancing and self defence were the activities of the day




Girls in Action programme 2008
Girls in Action programme 2008

The programme involves at least three different types of activities undertaken over a period of at least eighteen weeks over the academic year.  Various instructors from the community visit the school and deliver a one-hour extracurricular activity session either at lunch time or after school. The activities chosen are influenced by the interests of the girls and the availability of local instructors.

    • The ‘Girls in Action’ programme  is a new programme of activity for the school and should not be used to replace an existing one
    • The programme is designed to target teenage girls who are not currently involved in sports and physical activity


    • The girls will be consulted regarding the activities undertaken and involved in the organisation of activities
    • The programme will involve extra curricular activity (ie outside of the normal curriculum time)


  • The emphasis is on non-competitive activities (ie inclusive of all abilities and not organised competitions)
  • The programme involves at least two different activities undertaken over a period of at least 10 weeks

People rarely succeed unless they have fun in what they are doing.
– Dale Carnegie

Girls in Action programme 2008
Girls in Action programme 2008

Girls in Action 2007/2008 Report

The programme was offered to all post primary schools in County Monaghan and seven schools participated in the 2007/8 academic year.  They were St. Louis Secondary School Carrickmacross, Beech Hill College Monaghan, Inver College Carrickmacross, Largy College, Clones Ballybay Community College, Coláiste Oiriáll Monaghan and Monaghan Collegiate School.



The programme was very successful with an average of 20-30 typically non active or non sporty teenage girls taking part in each class. There were a wide range of activities delivered throughout the schools including aerobics, boxercise, circuits, dance, ab blast, flexability, toning, yoga, archery, tai chi, self defence, karate and kickboxing.


Girls in Action programme 2008
Girls in Action programme 2008

To complete the programme, six schools travelled to Ballybay to partake in the first girls in action sports and activity fest which was organised by the Monaghan Local Sports Partnership and the local Health promotion Department of the HSE.  The 100 or so students who attended the fest got the opportunity to meet with students from other schools who also participated in the ‘Girls in Action’ programme.  The activities available on the day were archery, self defence, boxercise, pilates and dance. Qualified tutors in the area of these activities were on hand to pass on their expert advice and tuition. The sun shone brightly at Ballybay Pearse Bros.


GAA grounds which facilitated the running of outdoor activities along with those indoor at the wonderful new facility which was the perfect hosting venue for a fun filled day of activities for all.
The ‘Girls in Action’ programme was a huge success for its first year in existence in Monaghan.  The programme is being offered again to all the post primary schools in Monaghan in September so don’t miss out on this opportunity to try out some new activities and to enhance the extracurricular programme within the school.


The Irish Sports Council aims to have more people more active in sport and by achieving that goal, assist in the building of a healthier society. The Council recognises that it cannot achieve these targets working alone and will work in partnership with governing bodies, sports partnerships and other relevant agencies. The Local Sports Partnership network is seen as the mechanism by which the Irish Sports Council can achieve its aims through the encouragement, promotion and development of sport within its local community.