Ms VAGHELA (Western Metropolitan) (22:51): My adjournment matter is directed to the Honourable Ros Spence, MP, the Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Minister for Community Sport and Minister for Youth. This adjournment matter relates to the portfolio responsibilities of community sport.
Applications for the latest round of the sporting club grants program are open. Clubs can apply for grants of up to $1000 for new uniforms and equipment; up to $5000 for training coaches, officials and volunteers; and up to $5000 to improve club operational effectiveness. Additionally, a new COVID recovery category has been created which provides grants of up to $5000 to help clubs, leagues and associations to procure items that will help them return to play safely. The sporting club grants are an integral part of the Victorian government’s sport and active recreation policy priorities. It provides a single entry point for community sports and active recreation clubs to receive funding that will assist in addressing a range of barriers to community participation in Victoria.
An additional $6 million has been added to the ongoing program that attained great popularity last year supporting 1200 clubs with $1.8 million across the state during the COVID crisis. The grants are for people of all ages and abilities. It is a grassroots sports initiative. This grants program will add a substantial forefront for people yearning to meet, interact and do sports as a hobby, which will further boost community inclusions. This is a massive opportunity for community sports and active recreation clubs to avail themselves of a grant that will help in transcending an area of barriers and will ensure community participation at a wider level across the state. Western Metropolitan Region has many sporting clubs that will get benefits from this program.
The action I seek from the minister is to provide me with an update on how the government is promoting this important initiative to clubs, leagues and associations in my electorate of Western Metropolitan Region.
I thank the Member for her question and for her support of community sport in Western Metropolitan Region.
As the Member has noted, the Sporting Club Grants program provides grants to assist in the purchase of sports uniforms and equipment, to improve the capacity and accessibility of Victorian clubs and other community sport and active recreation organisations, and increase the skills of their coaches, officials and managers.
Under the current $6 million round of the program, clubs can also apply for funding to assist with coronavirus (COVID-19) recovery, which will support Victorian sport and active recreation organisations to be COVIDSafe and assist with return to play costs and initiatives.
In addition, on 4 March 2021, I announced a one-off funding category that provides funding of $2,000 for eligible Victorian sport and recreation organisations that were forced to cancel or postpone events or activities as a result of last month’s “circuit breaker” lockdown.
Round 2 of the Sporting Club Grants opened on 12 February and media releases and other supporting materials were provided to local members to promote the opening of the program. The program was also promoted via email through recognised State Sporting Associations, State Sport and Recreation Bodies, Regional Sports Assemblies, Regional Academies of Sport, Local Government Authorities and Sport and Recreation Victoria’s Regional team, with a request to notify their local sporting clubs and any other networks.
To further promote the program, media channels such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram also announced the grants and subsequently the addition of Category 5 – Community Sport Event Support.
I would like to commend the Member for Western Metropolitan Region for her continued interest in the needs of the community sport and recreation sector, and particularly local sporting clubs in her electorate.