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Seattle Seahawks Announce Latest Grant Funding to Grow Girls Flag Football Across Washington State 

Team championing efforts to make girls flag a sanctioned high school sport, with official vote taking place in May 

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RENTON, Wash. – The Seattle Seahawks announced today $24,000 in grant funding to support the launch of new high school girls flag football teams in Washington. The latest districts and schools to receive grant funding are: Issaquah and Bellingham School Districts, as well as Wenatchee, Cedarcrest, Kingston, and Othello High Schools. The Seahawks have now donated more than $324,000 in grant funding since 2021 to launch girls flag football teams, with more than 80 high schools across the state now scheduled to offer girls flag football during the 2024-2025 school year.

The Seahawks are championing efforts to make girls flag football an official state-sanctioned high school sport. This May, a vote is scheduled for the 53 members of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) Representative Assembly to determine if girls flag will become sanctioned.

"Flag football is the one the fastest growing sports in our region and we are thrilled with the opportunity to continue to grow girls flag programs across our state," said Mario Bailey, Seahawks Vice President of Community Engagement and Legends. "We look forward to girls flag becoming the next official state-sanctioned sport, which will offer new and equitable opportunities for girls in our community to play flag football at the highest level."

If passed, girls flag football would become the first newly-sanctioned Washington state sport in six years, following the reintroduction of girls slowpitch softball as a sanctioned sport in 2018. Before that, the last new girls sport to be officially sanctioned was girls bowling in 1999. Sanctioning girls flag would open the door for teams to play in an official state championship tournament. There are currently ten states across the United States where girls flag is recognized as a sanctioned sport. Should the WIAA vote pass in May, Washington state would become the 11th.

Momentum for flag football continues to build globally. According to NFL FLAG, female participation in NFL FLAG leagues has grown 18% since 2019, with a 30% increase in female participation at the high school level. NFL FLAG also reports that 50% of females who now play flag football were previously not participating in other sports. Last year, it was announced that flag football will make its debut as an official Olympic sport at the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

Previous Seahawks grants have gone toward funding girls flag teams within Tacoma and Seattle Public Schools, Bellevue, Northshore, Auburn, Renton, Puyallup, Mercer Island, Federal Way, Highline, Kent, and more.

Schools interested in launching girls flag programs can fill out an interest form to connect with the Seahawks about future grant opportunities.

The Seahawks visited the Snohomish Boys & Girls Club for a girls flag football clinic on Sunday, March 24, 2024.

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