$4.5million for ‘This Girl Can’

By Tara Whitsed

Regional sport assembly Valley Sport will administer local This Girl Can funding after $4.5million was announced for regional Victoria.

The three-year funding will be shared among nine regional sport assemblies to make sport and physical activity more accessible and attractive to regional teenagers and women as part of VicHealth’s This Girl Can campaign.

The funding was welcomed by Member for Northern Victoria Wendy Lovell, who said the campaign had been successful in increasing female participation in physical activity and the new funding would reinforce this in regional areas.

‘‘As the local regional sport assembly, Valley Sport will use their share of the funding to help local clubs deliver new female-friendly activities, like sports programs for new mums,’’ she said.

‘‘It is critical that local sports clubs are supported to be more welcoming and attractive to women and young people and these funds will also be used to make sports clubs more inclusive for women and girls.’’

VicHealth chief executive Jerril Rechter explained why there was such a need to increase participation in sport when it came to teenagers and women.

‘‘Over 90 per cent of teenagers aren’t getting an hour of physical activity every day to benefit their health and half of teens drop out of sport when they turn 15,’’ she said.

‘‘Less than a third of us do enough physical activity in a week to benefit our physical health and mental wellbeing.’’

She said regional sports assemblies had fantastic knowledge of their local areas.

‘‘So we’re proud to work with them to meet the physical activity needs of regional Victoria.’’

Some assemblies will also work to improve participation rates of other community groups, such as children, men aged over 30, and less active adults with the funding.