The Western Region Football League will launch a women’s netball competition this season.

WRFL Netball will be run out of the Victoria University Community Sports Stadium at the Whitten Oval on Friday nights.

The season will begin on April 20, running for 12 weeks with a finals series.

The netball competition marks further growth for women’s sport within the league, with the WRFL already announcing it would have a standalone women’s football competition this year.

Last season, the WRFL played in a merged competition with the Essendon District Football League.

“This entrance into netball reinforces our marked intent to create sporting environments where everyone is welcome,” WRFL chief executive Matthew Duck said.

“At the heart of this initiative is a desire to increase the number of people playing sport, but a spin off benefit is that local footy clubs have another avenue available to them to build their respective membership bases.”

The initiative has generated plenty of interest from clubs. Already 12 clubs – Braybrook, Caroline Springs, Glen Orden, Hoppers Crossing, Manor Lakes, North Footscray, Parkside, Point Cook, Point Cook Centrals, Spotswood, Sunshine and Wyndham Suns – have flagged a desire to field a team.