AFL kids kicking healthy goals
A new pilot programme, launched today as part of the Australian Government’s Sporting Schools programme, will help schools increase the number of students playing AFL.
‘Experience AFL’, one of 12 pilot initiatives to be rolled out across Australia as part of Sporting Schools, will aim to encourage more children to get involved with the sport from a young age.
The Minister for Health and Sport Sussan Ley MP joined the AFL and the Australian Sports Commission at St Theresa’s Primary School in Melbourne to launch ‘Experience AFL and said the $100 million Sporting Schools programme was Australia’s largest school-based participation initiative for children.
“We know it’s vitally important that we help children right across Australia develop healthy and active lifestyles early in life,” Ms Ley said.
Sporting Schools encourages more Australian children to develop a lifelong interest in sport.
The Australian Sports Commission will help bring schools and sports together to provide a supportive environment that encourages participation for more than 850,000 Australian children.
Each year more than 5,700 schools will be funded through Sporting Schools for practical delivery of sports activities that suits their individual needs.
All registered schools will also have access to teaching resources and skilled coaching networks across Australia to support their involvement.
Australian Sports Commission CEO Simon Hollingsworth said it was important for sporting bodies to work together to develop a supportive environment for Australian children.
“We are excited to be partnering with Australia’s key participation sports to develop the Sporting Schools programme,” Mr Hollingsworth said.
“From tennis to bowls, athletics to cricket, we are committed to providing an environment for Australian school children to get involved in sport based activity before, during and after school. This participation at a young age is critical to help children develop a deep connection to sport and healthy and active lifestyles.”
Sporting Schools pilot programmes involving 12 sports will be rolled out over the next few months, with the programme to include more than 30 sports in total from July 2015.
The AFL program will be made available to all schools as part of the Sporting Schools programme once the current pilot is complete.