For various reasons, women and girls make up only around 15% of total US Chess members across the country.
HRCA is working hard to improve recruitment and retention of girls in chess in our region. Our youth clubs boast a far greater number of girls than the national average, yet we also have trouble retaining girls beyond the elementary school years.
Not all girls (or kids in general) are interested in competitive chess. Girls report that chess provides a tremendous self-confidence boost in addition to the other well-known academic and life benefits of chess. Noting that girls also gravitate toward each other in a chess club setting, HRCA is piloting programs to host “Girls’ Chess Knights” at local businesses, where girls can learn, play, and socialize with “no boys allowed”.
If you are interested in hosting a girls chess event, please contact us.
While girls can and do compete against boys in chess tournaments, they sometimes enjoy a tournament of their own. All girls are strongly encouraged to attend the All-Girls National Championship in Chicago in April.
HRCA President Christina Schweiss is also the Virginia State Representative for Women and Girls in Chess, pictured here with other prominent women chess organizers from across the United States.