A woman like Michelle Moore knows that sports can illuminate positive qualities in people that they might not have known otherwise. Thanks to her experience as a teacher and an athlete, she hosts symposiums and bringing together sharp minds to tackle racism in sport and work toward an equal environment for all, whether they’re running, jumping or swimming.
This Friday Michelle will be featured alongside Winsome Cornish, Gisella Asante and three other outstanding women at the nextI’mPOSSIBLE Conversation, taking place as part of the Women of the World festival during International Women’s Day at London’s Southbank Centre.
Parlour: What inspired you to use sport for social change, empowerment, and community development?
As a former 400 meter runner and now an enthusiastic netball player, sport has helped me to develop many life tools for success that transcend the sports field. I’ve established community sports programmes and seen the positive transformational impact sport has given individuals and communities from gaining employment to overcoming personal adversity through the discipline and focus that sport demands. It also represents our daily lives and reflects global politics. I’ve had a poster of the iconic 1968 Black power salute by John Carlos and Tommie Smith on my wall since university which reminds me of the importance of struggle and protest for better human rights for all. The true values of sport represent the best of humanity: determination, fellowship, teamwork and the pursuit of excellence.
Why focus on racism in sport?
Racism in sport is just one of the focuses of my consultancy. I’ve always felt strongly about equality. My mum is English and my dad is Guyanese, and when I was growing up my twin sister and I were often the minority at school. I remember wanting to be a positive female black role model to help young people and that’s why I became a teacher. Athletics was a big part of my life and my three passions emerged, sport, education and equality.
When I worked for Charlton Athletic Race Equality Partnership I found the role very inspiring as the work focused on developing anti-racism through the sport and engaging with the Black community and supporting them into work. My first symposiums have therefore focused on racism in sport. I’ve produced launch events for The Connie Henry Track Academy developed a schools engagement strategy for the Black Cultural Archives and organised Olympic legacy events for schools. My consultancy is diverse and wide-ranging focusing on equality, sport and education.
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