Friday, November 26, 2021

Supporting Bright Futures in Sport - 2021 SAF Grant Recipients

Rosey McGrath

After cheering on three of its former grant recipients in the Australian Paralympic team in Tokyo, Sport Access Foundation is delighted to announce its 2021 grant recipients.

BlueScope Sporting Club Grant - 2x Sporting Club Grants of $500 each

Awarded to two registered sporting clubs affiliated with a National Sporting Organisation (as recognised by Sport Australia).

The funding can be used for new and upgraded equipment such as marquees, lights, accessible club room and restrooms, accessible technology for club digital, cost to implement programs specifically for children with a disability and / or education of club officials / coaches / volunteers on working with children with a disability.

Goalball WA - Victoria Park, WA

Goalball, a Paralympian sport, is specifically designed for the blind and vision impaired, although as all players wear blacked-out eye shades, both sighted and vision impaired players are equal on court. Goalball WA aims to help its players reach their full potential, and to support them if they would like to challenge themselves to aim for the Paralympics.

Nicole Abbott, Chairperson for Goalball WA said:

“The grant will be put towards the purchase of 10 junior balls which are unique to the game, weighing 750gm and containing a bell. These are manufactured overseas which makes it a financial hurdle for our organisation. We can’t thank the Sports Access Foundation enough and are very grateful. Being a small unique sport that is known as ‘the toughest game no one has heard about’ makes receiving funding a challenge and we appreciate any help we receive.”

Ballarat Gymsports - Ballarat, VIC

The funding will assist members with Autism, Intellectual Disability, Vision Impairment, Cerebral Palsy and Physical Disability, and provide specialised coaching for them.

Casino RSM First Nations Bundjalung Girls Grant - Sporting Club Grants $6,000 total

Funds will go towards programs supported by Sport Access Foundation that will remove barriers for young Indigenous girls in Bunjalung country (Northern NSW region) to access sport.

The funding can be used for new and upgraded equipment such as marquees, lights, accessible club room and restrooms, accessible technology for club digital, cost to implement programs specifically for children with a disability and / or education of club officials /coaches / volunteers on working with children with a disability.

Indigenous Basketball Association (IBA) - $5,000 awarded

IBA is a not-for-profit entity, the original concept of which was founded by Patty Mills.

The IBA delivers programs at the grassroots level for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people so they have a better chance to advance in the sport and more importantly, succeed in life. The grant will help deliver a 1.5 day basketball clinic in Casino which will include educational sessions to consider the whole wellbeing of the participants including culture and identity, education and health, and mentoring and support to keep in touch with participants.

The program aims to have at least 50% indigenous girl s participating, with local indigenous leaders involved in the delivery of elements of the program.

Casino Fun Run - $1,000 awarded

Funds will assist with entry fees and costs for indigenous youth to participate in the 2022 event.

CompEat Nutrition Pathway to Paralympic Grant - 2x Individual Grants of $1,500 each

This grant was provided to help future Paralympians to meet their high performance expenses and the additional costs incurred through training and travelling to competitions.

Each recipient also receives CompEat Integrated performance support; the same support offered to Paralympians and Elite athletes including the Matildas, to support their personal and athletic development.

Layla Sharp

Age: 13   Sport: Athletics / Running   From: St Mary’s, NSW   Disability: Vision impairment

“Within the next year I am hoping to re-break my Australian Records in my classification and, as I get older and faster, edge closer to world records and achieve my long term goals of going to the Paralympics and Commonwealth Games.

Jack Howell

Age: 17   Sport: Paratriathlon   From: Berwick, VIC   Disability: Amputee

“This grant will help me with travel costs to attend National Junior and Paratriathlon races and hopefully international racing when COVID restrictions lift. I am very honoured to be selected from so many wonderful young athletes in Australia.”

Sport Access Foundation Kick Start Grant - 4x Individual Grants of $250 each

Caitlyn Hayes

Age: 10   Sport: Swimming   From: Helensvale, QLD   Disability: Cerebral Palsy

Liam Robinson

Age: 11   Sport: Brazilian Jiu Jitsu   From: Rockingham, WA   Disability: Cerebral Palsy

Xavier Bramley

Age: 9   Sport: Athletics   From: Bort, VIC   Disability: Physical Disability

Jasmyne Robinson

Age: 10   Sport: Swimming  From: Bullsbrook, WA   Disability: Idiopathic Scoliosis

Founded by two times Paralympian and Gold medalist (Rio 2016), Katie Kelly OAM, Sport Access Foundation was established to help create opportunities for Australian children with a disability, so that they can play and participate in sport.

“It was an honour to stand alongside our grant recipients and represent Australia at Tokyo. Now, thanks to the ongoing support of our sponsors and partners we’re thrilled to be inspiring the next group of Paralympians with the latest round of grants,” Katie said.

The three former recipients of Sport Access Foundation’s annual grant program who featured on the world stage at the 2021 Tokyo Paralympic Games in August were:

  • 2017 grant recipient, swimmer, Col Pearse - who won Bronze in the Men’s 100m Butterfly
  • 2019 grant recipient, Boccia player, Jamieson Leeson - who made the preliminary finals in the BC3 pairs for Boccia
  • 2020 grant recipient, swimmer, Keira Stephens - who won bronze in the Women's 100m Breaststroke SB10 as well as Bronze in the 4x 100m Women's Relay (34pts)

Mark Vassella, Managing Director and CEO of BlueScope, said the COVID-19 pandemic had highlighted the important role of local sporting clubs in the lives of Australian communities.

“Sporting Clubs are crucial for our communities, providing the social networks that encourage interactions to combat isolation and loneliness. It is important that young people who have a disability, are included in these activities by taking part in sport through their local club.”
“BlueScope is delighted to continue its support of the Foundation and we look forward to seeing this year’s recipients succeed on and off the pitch.”

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Sport Access Foundation acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.
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