COVID-Safe Community Sport – Ministerial Response
Scroll down for the Minister’s response, or click here to discover more about how we’re working for Wendouree.
Original constituency question from Juliana Addison MP to Parliament –
My constituency question is to the Minister for Community Sport.
How is the Andrews Labor government supporting the community sports sector to recover from the pandemic and operate in a COVID-safe way?
Across my electorate of Wendouree we have many local sporting clubs and leagues who have been financially impacted as a result of games, tournaments and seasons being disrupted or cancelled due to COVID restrictions. It would be devastating for players and members if these clubs and leagues were not able to continue as a result of their financial situation caused by COVID.
Ballarat sporting clubs and leagues play an important role in building social cohesion across my community and encourage young and old to get involved and be active. It is vital that they are supported to safely operate with COVID-safe sports plans. I thank everyone who volunteers for a local team, club or league. It is their efforts that make community sport possible and enjoyable for so many.
Response from the Hon. Ros Spence, Minister for Community Sport (17 Dec 2021) –
I thank the Member for Wendouree for her question and continued support of community sport in her local area.
The Andrews Labor Government is committed to ensuring the survival and viability of the sport and active recreation sector, and has provided $50 million through the Community Sport Sector COVID-19 Survival Package. The Package has provided much needed financial support to clubs, associations and leagues, state sporting associations, state sport and active recreation bodies and regional academies.
Of this funding, 473 grants totalling $600,790 have been provided to clubs and organisations in the Ballarat Local Government Area (LGA).
Additionally, the Andrews Labor Government provides support through the Sporting Club Grants Program, to assist clubs and organisations purchase sports uniforms and equipment, increase the skills of coaches, officials, volunteers and managers, and support improvements to club capacity and accessibility.
In 2020-21 the program included a one-off ‘COVID-19 Recovery’ category to address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the community sport and active recreation sector, as well as a ‘Community Sport Event Support’ category to provide support to eligible clubs that incurred irrecoverable costs after events or activities were cancelled or postponed as a result of the 2021lockdowns. Since March 2020, the Sporting Club Grants Program has provided 79 grants totalling $141,331 to clubs and organisations within the Ballarat LGA.
A new round of the Sporting Club Grants Program opened on 17 November 2021 and will close for applications on 25 January 2022. The Program will provide valuable support as sports return to play in 2022, and I encourage the member to promote and encourage the clubs within her community to consider applying for funds through this Program.
Thank you again to the Member for raising this important matter, and for her ongoing advocacy for community sport.