Over 150 sporting clubs across Victoria will be supported to meet the explosion in demand for grassroots women’s sport thanks to more than $440,000 in health promotion foundation VicHealth’s Active Club Grants funding.
The funding will help local sport clubs across Victoria deliver more opportunities for women and girls to get active, as well as providing more social, flexible and accessible sport programs. The grants will also provide more opportunities for people from disadvantaged communities to take part in sport.
VicHealth will be supporting many new football, cricket, soccer, and netball teams for women and girls, including a new football team in Flemington for girls from refugee and low-income families; and also new social sports, including a tennis competition for Muslim mums and new badminton programs for people with disability and LGBTI women and their allies.
Minister for Health Jill Hennessy said the Active Club Grants program would help more Victorians be healthy and physically active.
“We want everyone to get active and embrace a healthy lifestyle, no matter what age, gender or ability. This funding will support our grassroots clubs to get more people moving and involved in new and fun social ways of playing sport,” Minister Hennessy said.
Minister for Sport John Eren said the funding will help level the playing field and ensure more women and girls can play the sports they love.
“Women deserve exactly the same opportunity on the sporting field as men. We’ll do everything we can to make that happen,” Minister Eren said.
“Women’s sport is more popular than ever ‐ and these grants will help local clubs field new women’s and girls’ teams.”
VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter said the grants will help more Victorians to make physical activity part of their day-to-day life.
“Getting enough physical activity into our week is so important for good health and happiness. Unfortunately, not all Victorians have the same opportunities to achieve good health,” Ms Rechter said.
“This program is about supporting Victoria’s grassroots sport clubs to provide a wider range of opportunities for everyone to get involved in, including people who wouldn’t normally have the chance to play sport.
“In particular we know that women are much less likely to take part in club sport compared to men. Key barriers for women include a lack of confidence, feelings of judgement and a lack of flexible, female-friendly sports programs.
“In the past year our Active Club Grants have enabled thousands of women to get involved in sport. Now even more sport clubs across Victoria will be able to use these grants to respond to growing numbers of women and girls wanting to play sport.”
As part of VicHealth’s long-term plan to get more Victorians living healthier and happier lives, this round of Active Club Grants is providing 148 grants of up to $3,000 and seven grants of up to $10,000 to community sport clubs throughout Victoria.