Louise Quinn on how a note from her primary school teacher inspired her
"Sometimes, the smallest of gestures can keep you going."
Louise Quinn has opened up about how a note from one of her primary school teachers inspired her.
"The fact that I’m remembering this story shows how big an impact it had," she added.
The Arsenal defender and Republic of Ireland international was speaking at the latest launch of the 20x20 campaign, which encourages women and young girls to 'Hero Their Hero' - the people who supported them along the way.
For Louise, one of those people is her former teacher Ms. Slattery - who sent a note that "would stick with me through life" home with her when she was 7 years old.
"There’s been so many people along the way. Like my parents, they’ve done so much.
"But one of the things I’ll always remember is when I was in primary school, a teacher - Ms. Slattery - sending a note home to my parents."
The note, which she shared in full on her Twitter account, said that there's "no homework off for anyone who asks".
❌ Little did my teacher know that this note would stick with me throughout my life... I want to Hero my Hero, Ms Slattery for believing in me & giving me the encouragement to play soccer when I was 7. We all have a hero who got us into sport, who's yours? ⚽#CantSeeCantBe #20x20 pic.twitter.com/TVnNHAsk7U
— Louise Quinn (@louise_quinn4) May 9, 2019
However, the teacher added:
"I think you're a good footballer - better than any boy."
Louise admit that her mum still has the note, as she reflected on how important Ms. Slattery's message was to her.
"20 years on, my mam has still kept that note. That just shows how important it was to my parents; the fact that I’m remembering this story shows how big an impact it had.
"Sometimes the smallest of gestures can keep you going."
Last month, Arsenal won the Women's Super League Title - their first in seven years.
Recalling the big win, Louise said:
"It was the first time in seven years, so it was pretty big. It felt surreal; pure joy and excitement.
"To finally secure that trophy, it’s a very special feeling."
And while her family were watching the title-winning game from home ("they didn't want to pre-empt anything," Louise noted), they'll be there to see them lift the trophy this weekend.
"It'll be really special," she added.
20x20 is an ambitious two-year long initiative to better promote and champion women in sport.
With the tagline of "if she can't see it, she can't be it," the 20x20 movement has three targets to reach by 2020:
- 20 percent more media coverage of women in sport
- 20 percent more female participation
- 20 percent more attendance at women’s competitions and events
And at Maximum Media, we're proud that Her and SportsJOE is backing the 20x20 movement as official digital media partners.
Photos via ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy.