CONCACAF head of women’s football Karina LeBlanc, pictured at the 2015 Women's World Cup, has announced plans to grow the game in the region ©Getty Images

The Confederation of North, Central America and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) has launched a plan to grow the women’s game across its 41 member associations.

Proposals were unveiled by CONCACAF head of women’s football Karina LeBlanc, following the governing body’s Extraordinary Congress in France's capital Paris.

LeBlanc said CONCACAF would seek to communicate the importance of women’s football and advocate on key issues affecting women.

It will aim to create career pathways to develop and empower women in football, and also seek to build a sustainable model to enhance the game’s commercial value.

In 2018, the Confederation established a dedicated women’s football department and appointed its first head of women’s football, former Canadian international LeBlanc.

CONCACAF also invested in development programmes, while hosting six competitions involving nearly 2,000 players.

LeBlanc said that even with two of the top five-ranked women’s football teams coming from CONCACAF – United States and Canada – there remained an opportunity to do better.

The United States are reigning Women's World Cup champions but LeBlanc feels more can be done ©Getty Images
The United States are reigning Women's World Cup champions but LeBlanc feels more can be done ©Getty Images

“The mission we’ve set out on is to improve the lives of women and girls throughout our region through the sport,” LeBlanc said.

“We need to change perceptions, grow participation and build a sustainable foundation so we can do just that.

“We believe we can hit some of these targets very quickly, but it was important to create something like this plan so that everyone is on the same page.

"We all agree it is critical that we create growth and opportunity for women in the sport.”

The former Canada goalkeeper also pointed towards potentially creating new competitions across the region and the launch of more women’s clubs.

CONCACAF President Victor Montagliani echoed LeBlanc's sentiments.

“We need to accelerate the development of women’s football in our region and our strategic plan is the starting point," Montagliani said.

“The game is universal, therefore, our aim is to break down cultural barriers, invest in women’s football and help the sport grow and thrive across our member associations.

"The basis of this plan is to provide every girl in our Confederation with an opportunity to play the game and dream.”