The Andrews government is stepping up its support for First Nations athletes in Victoria with the latest round of the Aboriginal Sport Participation Grant Program. Launched by Minister for Community Sport, Ros Spence, this program provides crucial funding for aspiring athletes, enabling them to participate in sports competitions and achieve their athletic dreams.
Junior teams can access grants of up to $2,500, while senior teams are eligible for up to $1,500 in funding. This financial support covers travel and accommodation expenses for teams participating in Victorian or national Aboriginal sporting carnivals and tournaments. Additionally, there are grants of up to $1,000 available to assist with the purchase of team uniforms and sports equipment.
Individual athletes are not left out; they can receive up to $250 per person to acquire sporting uniforms and equipment, and up to $750 for travel and accommodation costs.
In the previous year, the Naarm Angels Netball Club and Ballarat basketballer River Sisic both benefited from this program, allowing them to participate in various competitions. The program has proven to be a game changer, providing vital support for First Nations athletes.
Minister Ros Spence emphasized that these grants are aimed at nurturing the next generation of sporting champions in Victoria. Since its inception in 2020, the Aboriginal Sport Participation Grant Program has allocated over $460,000 to 430 sporting groups and individuals, strengthening the bonds within the community sport sector.
In the words of Minister for Treaty and First Peoples, Gabrielle Williams, “These grants not only support Aboriginal athletes to compete in the sports they love, but they also build important relationships and connections that help strengthen the community sport sector.” The program stands as a testament to the government’s commitment to leveling the playing field for First Nations athletes and encouraging greater participation in sports across Victoria.
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