The International Table Tennis Association will celebrate International Women's Day with a a special webinar ©ITTF

The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) will mark International Women's Day tomorrow with a webinar entitled #BreakTheBias.

The ITTF webinar, due to take place at 11am-UK time, will consist of a roundtable of experts from different fields, along with presentations of outstanding national projects towards women’s participation on and off the field.

Table tennis has become a great tool to promote female empowerment and break down the stereotypes in the sport sector, it is claimed.

ITTF hopes to continue with its efforts to strengthen women’s participation in the sport and raise awareness for gender equality by highlighting the Member Association Assistance Programme for Women’s Development in Table Tennis.

So far, 21 Member Associations have received financial support to implement national projects towards women’s table tennis development and four of them will have the chance to present their projects during the webinar.

The ITTF is one of only three Summer Olympic International Federations with a woman President following the election of Sweden's Petra Sörling last November.

"We were very glad to see the positive response and interest of Member Associations in the programme, but also the positive impact and legacy on women table tennis development that the program had left in 2019," Katarzyna Kubas, the ITTF head of development, said. 

"The aim of the programme is not only to implement the standalone project, but to make a positive difference through the project in the long run. 

"It is truly rewarding to know that it has triggered significant actions within Member Associations, such as women having been appointed for decision making positions, female former players becoming full-time coaches, the creation of networks for women in table tennis. 

"Similarly, when it comes to its second edition, we noticed a high level of commitment and willingness to make an effort towards women’s table tennis development that were shown through applications and engagement during the projects’ implementation which is a very promising outlook for strengthening and advancing women’s participation in table tennis in general.” 

The ITTF President and gender commissioner, respectively Sörling and Hajera Kajee will start the webinar followed by the roundtable with Zoran Primorac, chair of ITTF Athletes Commission, Alan Hopkins, deputy chair of ITTF Umpires and Referees Committee, Constantina Crotta, chair of the ITTF Para Table Tennis Committee and Monalisa Baruah Mehta, the coach and former player from India, Monalisa Baruah Mehta.

Among the presenters are Taisa Belli from the Brazil Table Tennis Conderation Edith Namukasa of Uganda Table Tennis Association, Fatemeh Keyvani from Table Tennis Federation of Islamic Republic of Iran and Jessica MacAskill of Table Tennis New Zealand.

Suheil Tandon and Julia Tappendorf, project leader of community table tennis at the ITTF Foundation and ITTF Foundation programmes coordinator, respectively, will also take part in the presentations.

International Women's Day has been celebrated annually on March 8 since 1911 to mark the cultural, political and socioeconomic achievements of women throughout their history.

To register for the webinar click here