As part of International Women’s Day and Female Football Week, we profile some of the Club’s female staff. Today we meet Belinda Pacella.
What is your role at Melbourne City FC?
I'm a physiotherapist currently working part time, mostly with the A-League side. My roles include providing treatment and rehabilitation to the players, along with supervising training and gym sessions.
What is it like to work in the football environment?
It's a highly motivating workplace because everybody wants to improve every day. You are surrounded by ambitious and like-minded people and it makes you want to improve as a therapist and person every time you go to work. I also enjoy the diversity of the changeroom, and the feeling of working together towards a common goal.
Why is it important to recognise the impact of women on football clubs at all levels?
Everyone should feel like they belong at a football club. I love the saying "You can't be what you can't see" and I think the more visible women are, whether we are playing in the W-League, in the football department or on the board, then the easier it will be for aspiring young girls to follow their dreams.
Women also broaden the conversation by providing another perspective on things. Often this lifts standards, breaks down barriers and leads to more innovation - which is critical in a high-performance setting.
The International Women's Day hashtag is #BeBoldForChange? What do you think that means to you?
For me, it means calling things out for what they are. I don't think it’s fair that my sons are treated differently from my niece, and being bold for change means standing up and saying that it is not ok.
How important is it to recognise International Women's Day?
It's so important that we celebrate the success of the amazing women out there and acknowledge the men who are standing up for change too. Although it's a great day, we can't forget that gender equality matters everyday.
Who has been one of your mentors/inspirations to your career and why?
One of my mentors is Dr. Tania Pizzari, who is a very well regarded Physiotherapist and researcher. She has guided me throughout my career, and I was very fortunate to work at her physio clinic. She remains humble and is someone I continually look up too.