Hildyard: Better sporting facilities needed for local women's sport

DISCUSSION: Deputy leader in the legislative council Clare Scriven (left) and Shadow Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing Katrine Hildyard believe many small regional sporting clubs miss out on facility upgrade funding.
DISCUSSION: Deputy leader in the legislative council Clare Scriven (left) and Shadow Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing Katrine Hildyard believe many small regional sporting clubs miss out on facility upgrade funding.

Regional sporting clubs have long fought for improved women's facilities, and many teams have worked tirelessly to give its players the best space possible.

Shadow Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing Katrine Hildyard said many regional clubs struggle to receive funding through the Marshall Government's current funding model.

The Grassroots Football, Cricket, and Netball Facility Program is aimed at increasing participation and improving gender equity in the aforementioned sports to support local communities.

"The government's Grassroots Football, Cricket, and Netball Facility Program is obviously only for those sports, but it also requires a 50 per cent co-contribution," Mrs Hildyard said.

"For those clubs who can't afford the co-contribution or get that from council, because they may have another priority, they ultimately miss out."

Mrs Hildyard said having good female sporting facilities sends a message that girls and women are welcome to participate. She also said that all clubs want to improve their women's facilities.

"All clubs are absolutely aware of that, and they want the facilities, they want to do the best thing for the girls - they're just frustrated," Mrs Hildyard said.

Deputy leader in the legislative council Clare Scriven stated in a conversation with the Border Chronicle that the co-contribution can often exclude clubs that need facility funding the most.

"It often excludes the clubs that need it the most - and clubs that are relatively better off can perhaps do that," Mrs Scriven said.

"Which means that clubs who are struggling with sub-standard facilities have little to no chance - there's a real inequity there.

"That's often the case for smaller clubs - often townships are struggling to keep all sorts of things in their town, and then to be excluded because they don't have the funds is unfair."

Mrs Hildyard stated that no female athlete should have to get changed in their car, and not have the option to shower after a game.

The Tatiara is full of relatively small towns, but in the past 12 months, various clubs have seen their sporting projects funded.

Thanks to the Federal Government's Drought Communities Programme, a number of sporting clubs around the district have received funding to achieve their projects.

Some projects included Padthaway Football Club's change room redevelopment, Mundulla Netball Club's court makeover and lighting upgrade, and Bordertown Cricket Club's practice net upgrade.

The Marshall Government's Grassroots Football, Cricket, and Netball Facility Program also provided Border Downs Tintinara Football and Netball Club with $275,000 to improve their facilities this year.

Minister for Recreation, Sport and Racing Corey Wingard has been contacted for comment.