This paper evaluates the Healthy Sporting Environments Demonstration Project, which was a $2 million program to support grassroots sports clubs in Victoria to become healthier and more welcoming and inclusive.
The evaluation of VicHealth’s pioneering Healthy Sporting Environments Demonstration Project has given us a better understanding of how health promotion can be weaved through grassroots sports clubs.
Increasing safe and inclusive participation in physical activity, promoting healthy eating and reducing harm from alcohol, UV exposure, smoking and sports injuries can all lead to improved health outcomes for the whole community.
Given the success of the Demonstration Project (which concluded in March 2013), the program was expanded to regional and rural areas throughout Victoria. With the right support, all community sports clubs have the potential to become healthier, more welcoming places through good governance, leadership, and a culture that supports health and wellbeing.
Long term, we hope this project will increase community demand for healthy sporting clubs and contribute to reducing the future burden of preventable disease.