RATP is an official supplier to the French Handball Federation (FFHB) and the official transport provider to the French Women’s Handball Team. Its association with the sport began at the 2007 Women’s World Championship in Paris, an event for which it was an official partner and supplier. This support for handball underlines the RATP’s attachment to gender equality and the representation of women in business and society.
This citizen initiative was launched in October, 2010 in line with "Rugby Wednesdays" and aims to encourage young girls aged 13-17 from working-class areas of the Ile-de-France region to participate in sports. Backed by the French Handball Federation, FFHB, and the Secretariat of State in charge of City Policy, this initiative aims to raise awareness for this sport and its values.
After a theoretical phase, "Handball Wednesdays" will offer a practical, sports phase at partnering clubs in the Ile-de-France region. The girls will participate in fun workshops with an RATP representative focusing on the fundamentals of handball and will be surrounded by coaches from FFHB.
Amelie Goudjo, who also plays for the Issy Paris Handball team, agreed to be the sponsor of the initiative: "I am pleased to contribute some of my experience and be able to share my passion for this sport with young girls that are not members of the federation." The fourth edition of "Handball Wednesdays" held between December 2013 and January 2014.
The partnership between the FFHB and RATP provides an opportunity to promote the shared values of gender equality and opposition to all forms of discrimination. It was a natural step, then, for RATP to lend the French Women’s Handball Team the benefit of its transport expertise. A number of events, including Handball Park, are being planned as part of the partnership between RATP and the FFHB.
RATP transported thousands of spectators to the World Women’s Handball Championships in Paris in 2007. The success of the French team, who called themselves the “Femmes de Défis” – literally, “The Women of Challenges” – persuaded the RATP to continue its association with the sport until the 2012 London Olympics. RATP shares the team’s go-getting attitude and desire to surpass itself, as well as its modernising commitment to gender equality and its opposition to all forms of discrimination. As with rugby, a series of fun, interactive events have been organised around the theme of Women’s Handball.
RATP has signed a partnership for two seasons with the Issy Paris Hand professional women’s team, the primary club of Ile-de-France and team of Amélie Goudjo, sponsor of the Mercredis du Handball (“handball Wednesdays”). Second-division French champions at the end of the 2009-2010 season, the Issy Paris Hand players are now back in the first division with justifiably high ambitions for the new season.
For this partnership, RATP will mobilise its teams and expertise in transport solutions to assist the players and staff in some of their travelling. It will also support the club by promoting home matches on its billboard network.
The Issy Paris Hand club’s website: www.issyparishand.fr [This content is not available in English]
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