Funding is available to increase active participation by Indigenous Australians in active sport and recreation.
The Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program is a program administered by the Office for Sport as part of the Australian Government’s ‘whole of government’ approach to assisting Indigenous Australians.
The Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program supports community participation in sport and active recreation activities that help to improve the health and physical wellbeing of Indigenous Australians and those that contribute to broader social benefits for participants and their communities, whilst providing entry level employment opportunities for Indigenous (and non-Indigenous) people in sport and recreational activities.
The aims of ISARP are to increase active participation of able and disabled Indigenous Australians in sport and active recreation activities; encourage and increase community ownership and management of sport and active recreation activities; provide employment opportunities for people to support the provision of sport and recreations activities; promote and provide support for mainstream sporting pathways and development opportunities through competition for talented Indigenous athletes, and deliver flexible sport and recreation programs focussed on whole of government outcomes that meet the needs of communities.
The Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program contributes to the identified target area of closing the life expectancy gap within a generation within the Australian Government’s initiative of Closing the Gap in Indigenous disadvantage by providing more opportunities for sport and physical activity among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The Council of Australian Governments (COAG) recognises that overcoming Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander disadvantage requires long-term generational commitment that will see major efforts directed across a number of strategic platforms or ‘Building Blocks’. Of the seven Building Blocks endorsed by COAG, the Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program primarily contributes to Health (by encouraging a healthier lifestyle that includes physical activity), Economic Participation (through employment opportunities for both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people such as sport and recreation officers), Safe Communities (by providing an alternative to anti-social behavior) and Governance and Leadership (by funding initiatives to build capacity of Indigenous communities to deliver sport and recreation activities independently).
The objectives of the Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program are:
- to increase the active participation of able and disabled Indigenous Australians in sport and active recreation activities
- to encourage and increase community ownership and management of sport and active recreation activities, including through skills development, and
- to provide employment opportunities for people to support and/or assist in the provision of sport and active recreation activities and specifically for entry level positions for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people for positions available more broadly in the sport and active recreation industry.
The Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program supports a whole range of activities from high participation sports (including cricket, football, netball, basketball and athletics) through to Traditional Indigenous Games. The activities can include but are not limited to regular training sessions and competing in regular (weekly) competitions. Activities that include lead up preparation and training and culminate in the attendance at carnivals, and competitions will be considered a higher priority than those activities that are for example, one/two day carnival based. Projects will attract stronger support if they:
- encourage wide community involvement and active participation in group sport and active recreation activities
- build the skills of community members to participate in, organise and promote community sport and active recreation activities over the long term, and
- encourage alcohol and drug-free participation and respect for players, officials and spectators.
Any person or organisation with a current Australian Business Number (ABN) can apply for funding. This includes community-based, not-for-profit organisations that can enter into a legally binding funding agreement with the Australian Government.
Government bodies can also apply but their applications will only be considered if there is a clearly identified need for the proposed project and the community has been consulted and supports the proposed project. Evidence of community consultation and support may take the form of a letter or letters signed by relevant community organisations (for example, a local governing body or land council). The letter or letters should clearly explain what the proposed project is, how it will assist the community, how the community has been consulted and that the project has the support of the community.
Government bodies will also need to identify if their project or a similar project has previously been funded by another level of government (i.e. state, territory or local). If it has, the body will need to provide a strong justification as to why the Australian Government should fund the project.
Examples of organisations funded under the Indigenous Sport and Active Recreation Program include but is not limited to:
- community organisations
- local sporting groups
- national sporting organisations
- state sporting organisations
- local government authorities
- state/territory governments
- private-owned organisations.
Applications close 16 March 2013.
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