How girls are calling the shots at the Confraternity
FOR the first time in Confraternity history, the girls are calling the shots.
This year is the first time there have been female referees officiating at the largest school-boys rugby league carnival in the state.
Kailey Beattie and Jasmine Walters are two of the women who have been selected to sport the referee's uniform this week at the Confraternity Carnival.
Ms Beattie said she found her stride in rugby league through refereeing.
"My dad always played and I had a bit of a loved the sport but never really wanted to play myself," she said.
"So I saw this avenue and went down that path."
That was six years ago. Now Ms Beattie has been officiating at carnivals of state and national calibre.
She said she has been a referee at the State Junior Carnival for the past three years, the National Women's Carnival this year, U18s and countless more.
"I think the people and the game are probably the best part," she said.
"It's good fun."
She said throughout the past six years as a referee, she has been about to build her confidence on and off the field.
Ms Beattie said the number of women taking an interest in refereeing rugby league was definitely growing.
She said at this year's National Women's Carnival there was also a Women's In League Officiating Program with heaps of women from across the state meeting in the Gold Coast to be involved.
While Ms Beattie has officiated her fair share of league carnivals, Ms Walters said this was one of her first carnivals.
Having spent five years as a ref, Ms Walters said her local club was searching for an official and in a community with a big football focus she used to volunteer as a ref.
"I was playing rugby league since I was five years old up until 12 and that's the age that you can play with the boys," she said.
"So there was nothing really to do where I was from other than footy so I took up (reffing).
"I really enjoy it... I enjoy the game itself, like playing and refereeing.
"You meet so many new people, get different experience and it's just a great game to be involved in."
Getting the opportunity to ref numerous games per day, Ms Walters said the carnival had been great, getting to meet people and improve on her game.
"I just soak every minute in," she said.
Both the girls said they definitely wanted to continue refereeing in the future.
The Confraternity Carnival will break today to give players and officials a rest and resume on tomorrow.
The Queensland Independent Secondary Schools Netball Carnival is on at the Bundaberg Multiplex and Shalom College.