The State Government is establishing a program to fund the upgrading of grassroots sporting facilities and help grow local participation.
The program has the potential to inject $24 million over the next two years into sports infrastructure and building upgrades with a key focus on women’s facilities.
The AFL and Cricket Australia have endorsed the Government’s commitment to provide $10 million, with the SANFL, SACA and Netball SA to advise on where the money should be spent.
The AFL is also contributing $1 million with Cricket Australia and SACA each adding $500,000 towards the fund.
Clubs and councils will be required to contribute at least 50% of the project costs.
Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing, Corey Wingard said the extra funds from the sports’ peak bodies will boost the program’s funding capacity and he’ll consider adding another $5 million if it’s successful and gains ongoing support from Cricket Australia, the AFL and Netball SA.
“The Marshall Government is committed to growing community sports participants by providing the right incentives for sports clubs to improve their facilities and attract more people to their venues, especially women,” he said.
SANFL CEO Jake Parkinson said his organisation was pleased to be partnering with the State Government to address a significant gap in sporting infrastructure across South Australia.
“This funding program will increase participation in football with an emphasis on inclusion and diversity through the development of quality, well-designed shared-use facilities,” he said.
“With football participation growing at an unprecedented rate in recent years, there is an urgent need to develop new and existing facilities across the state.
“Football, cricket and netball clubs play a valuable role in all communities and this combined fund will support the health and growth of sport across SA.”
Cricket Australia CEO, James Sutherland thanked the State Government for its support of cricket and delivering dedicated infrastructure to the sport.
“This fund is a first for cricket in South Australia, and will support the tens of thousands of people in communities across the state who play and support our game,” he said.
“Australian cricket is pleased to contribute $1 million to this fund, which is all part of our vision to grow and develop community cricket.”
SACA CEO Keith Bradshaw said the government partnership will provide fun places for all South Australians.
Netball SA CEO Ben Scales said it is important for sporting clubs to have quality facilities to retain their current members, attract new members and support the growth of participation.
“Netball, cricket and football have demonstrated a long history of working well together when sharing services and facilities,” he said.
“The funding measures announced today are a smart approach to improving facilities across the state and Netball SA looks forward to working collaboratively with SACA and SANFL.
“Netball SA thanks the State Government for their support of grassroots netball clubs.”
Minister Wingard said the Marshall Government is investing to create more jobs, lowering costs for families and delivering better services through providing the right resources to get more people to participate in sport.