Women's Chess Network
We are starting a Women's Chess Network, in response to:
The refusal of any funding contribution towards free chess lessons for women at Casual Chess, by the national chess body.
An attempt by that body to abolish the Women's Chess Director post, then appointing a man ahead of two qualified female candidates.
The appointment of a male Captain of the Women's Chess Olympiad Team.
The new network will provide practical and emotional support to existing female chess players, as well as bringing as many new women as possible into the game. We will bring women together to work for greater representation and better conditions in the chess world. We will also support the work of London's chess cafe run by and for women, 'Casual Chess'.
As well as money to pay coaches, volunteers' expenses, publicity, etc over the coming year, we hope to be able to offer one-to-one coaching to promising young female players, help with tournament expenses, etc. We also want to create an online resource specifically for female chess players, and advise chess clubs on how to attract more women. The World Chess Championship in London in November presents an excellent rallying point. The first task will be to apply for registered charity status.
Casual Chess has been doing great work - we need to extend its reach in every way, including geographically. We would love your help! Ideally, financially, but volunteers, sponsors, help with fundraising/PR/accounts/from female chess teachers all more than welcome. Including part-time use of a desk in central London, if possible.
In the public mind, chess equates to intelligence and mastery - we cannot allow that territory to be considered 'men-only'.
Thank you! :)
1. Fees for becoming a registered charity, including the £200 fee to the Charities Commission, mandatory auditing of our accounts, annual general meeting, annual report publication, etc: £500
2) Online costs and membership fees, including build/run/host a new website, build up and manage membership database, belong to organisations which will help us reach women/girls who could be persuaded to take up chess, such as meetup.com: £1,000.
3) Public Relations: to put out press releases, explode the myth that chess is somehow a 'man's game', and respond in the media to the constant 'women's brains can't chess' or other sexist chess happenings: £1,000 (it is hoped to supplement this with volunteer time)
4) Bringing new women into chess: regular, frequent, free group lessons for women, including paying female coaches for some hours (others to be volunteered), venue costs, etc: £12,000
5) Coaching grants for individual female chess players of promise, to help them pay for grandmaster coaching, tournament travel expenses, etc: £5,000
6) Volunteers' expenses, so organisers and volunteers aren't left with out of pocket travel costs etc in giving their time: £3,000
7) Publicity print and distribution: glossy flyers in carefully chosen locations, aiming to attract new women to play chess: £500
8) Administration work (ideally supplemented by volunteers), time-sensitive core tasks such as contacting existing female players, dealing with email enquiries, administering a planned membership scheme for chess clubs/tournaments which want to become woman-friendly: £2,000
Obviously, this budget will be subject to review once the charity's Trustees are formally appointed and have held budget-setting meetings, and depending on how much of the above can be achieved via in-kind donations and volunteer time. Any budget will reflect how the charity's Trustees think we can best achieve its aims - bringing more women into chess; improving conditions in the chess world for new and current female players; supporting all women who play chess or wish to, particularly those facing additional barriers due to racial or other kinds of discrimination. Thank you!