The State Government will invest a further $275,000 into SANFL women’s and girls football in response to an unprecedented 60 per cent increase in participation since the successful launch of the Australian Football League Women’s competition.
The money will be used to recruit and train coaches, umpires and junior development officers in both the Adelaide metro and regional South Australia.
Minister Assisting the Minister for Sport, Katrine Hildyard, said the SANFL registered an extra 82 girls’ teams in 2017, and this number is expected to increase in 2018.
Ms Hildyard said junior girls football has grown more than 300 per cent over the past two years and the State Government is committed to ensuring clubs have the resources they need to deal with this huge increase.
This new money comes on top the recent $100,000 Female Inclusion and Participation Program grant.
Since 2015/16, the State Government has provided grants of $260,000 to the SANFL through the Sport and Recreation Inclusion Program.
A further $100,000 has also been provided for the Female Inclusion and Participation Program. This latest injection of $275,000 over two years will assist the SANFL to maximise the surge in interest in women’s and girls football.
The Office for Recreation and Sport has also been working with SANFL and other sporting bodies to provide resources and to develop strategies that support women’s participation in sport.
In the recent State Budget, an additional $14 million over two years was allocated to fund sport and recreation organisations to address the barriers to female participation.
Quotes attributable to Minister Assisting the Minister for Recreation and Sport Katrine Hildyard
Since the introduction of the AFLW, women’s and girls football has experienced unprecedented growth in participation here in South Australia.
It is vital that we capitalise on this growth and that is why the State Government is investing a further $275,000 to ensure the SANFL has the resources they need to cope with the influx of players.
The benefits of organised sport are well known and I am thrilled so many girls and young women have been inspired to take up footy since the launch of the AFLW.
Quotes attributable to SANFL CEO Jake Parkinson
We are absolutely thrilled to receive the additional support from the State Government to enable continued development of female football in South Australia.
With one in eight players in SANFL Juniors being female, we will now have the ability to focus additional resources at the grassroots level right through to our elite competition, the SANFL Statewide Super Women’s League.
We are grateful to the State Government for recognising the importance of supporting female football and look forward to the continued growth of the sport.