Towards the GOAL for grassroots sport
Bankstown Sports is committed to its 43 associated sporting clubs and is focused on improving participation and access to sport in our local community. It is our firm belief that this aim is achieved when sporting clubs are implementing best practice in their governance and operations. To support this belief, the G.O.A.L. (Governance and Operations Accreditation Level) program was established.
The GOAL project focuses on strategic objectives as benchmarks, based on five key operating areas:
1. Finance Management and Governance
2. Communication, Information Management and Community Engagement
3. Equipment and Facilities Management
4. Player, Volunteer Management and Codes of Behaviour
5. Health & Safety and Risk Management
In 2016, the first G.O.A.L. survey was completed to measure an associated sporting club’s current status across these five key areas. The results provided an understanding of how our associated sporting clubs are being governed and run, and identifying key areas of focus in terms of the support and training Bankstown Sports could provide.
In May 2018, the second iteration of the GOAL survey was administered by consultants Crowe Horwath, in conjunction with our Sport and Community department. Thirty-three clubs were asked to respond to more than 100 questions focusing on the above areas and, based on these results, were given an accreditation level from 1-5. That score was then converted to a star rating with recommendations given to clubs as to how they could improve their governance and operations in key areas.
Encouragingly, the results showed improvement across all five key areas of governance and operations. Of the 33 associated sporting clubs, 24 had improved on their results from 18 months earlier with the overall average star rating jumping from 2.9 out of 5 in 2016 to 3.1 out of 5 in 2018.
These improvements in the management and governance of our associated sporting clubs are having a widespread effect on the local community, as shown through better relationships with sporting governing bodies, local councils and other community organisations. Many of our clubs have enjoyed not only an increase in membership but in event participation as people recognise the positive changes in management and operation. We aspire for our associated sporting clubs to be viewed as the clubs of choice in their local communities and competitions.
The GOAL survey will be administrated again in 2020 when we hope all our associated sporting clubs will target a minimum 4-star rating across those five key areas as we seek to support and encourage best practice in all facets of their operations. That’s the goal!
At age eight, Renae Edmunds took up Baton Twirling and instantly fell in love with the sport.
It is a complex sport, combining dance, agility, co-ordination, flexibility and often gymnastics – all while manipulating a metal baton. Now 15, Renae says she loves the challenge it brings and the competitive nature of it, despite the potential for injury.
“I love getting on the floor and showing my routine to everyone,” she says. “There are a lot of challenges in baton twirling and it is quite common to get injuries during some of the tricks we perform.”
Renae trains 15-20 hours a week, mixing it up with a few different classes including twirling, ballet and strength workouts with a personal trainer. She also has regular Skype calls with her overseas coaches who guide her through new moves and routines.
All the hard work paid off with Renae being selected to represent Australia at the World Championships in Florida in August. The trips are self-funded and cost thousands of dollars, which is why Bankstown Sports has supported Renae’s progression in the sport in previous years with cash contributions. This year, Bankstown Sports was proud to support Renae again with $500 in funding, to assist with her flight, accommodation and travelling expenses for the World Championships. Renae says it is a huge help.
“I have been working towards this goal since I was eight years old. The support from Bankstown Sports over the years has meant so much to me, and I think it’s great that the club gives back to the community.”
Young BMX Superstar climbs International Ranks
While he is just six years old, Harley Bradshaw has already been a member of Bankstown Sports Cycling Club for a year, has been racing BMX for more than three years and already taken the podium in international competition.
Harley spends up to 10 hours a week training for BMX and track cycling, and recently achieved some outstanding results on the BMX track. In 2017, he travelled to South Carolina to compete in the BMX World Championships to finish with a world’s No.4 ranking.
“I like the competition and making new friends but sometimes I do so many laps my legs get really sore,” he says.
As a result of his world ranking, Harley was selected to represent Australia in the Australian National Team at the 2018 BMX World Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan, in June. He took out the bronze medal in the final, having earlier won his semi-final heat.
Harley says his favorite thing about BMX is making new friends, but he still must make school a priority.
“I enjoy BMX as a hobby, but I would also like to use it as a career in the future. I am in year 1 and my parents make me finish my homework before I go to training.”
Birrong Sports FC hosts junior Japanese soccer team
While Birrong Sports has been involved in a Cultural Exchange Program since 1999, this year it hosted a junior football (soccer) team from Bankstown sister city Suita City, Osaka, Japan.
In August, a team of 20 boys, aged 10-12, along with five officials, landed in Sydney eager to take on an experience of a lifetime.
During the stay, the Japanese players were billeted with families from Birrong Sports Football Club to enhance their cultural experience, a valuable aspect of the exchange program over the years as it assists manage language barriers between players and officials.
During the visit, both the Japanese and Birrong Sports football players participated in the Mini World Cup Gala Day where players played in mixed teams. After the gala day, the kids were treated to an Aussie lunch at the Birrong Sports Football clubhouse.
During the exchange program, the Japanese players visited Birrong Public School where they participated in classroom activities to experience an Australian learning environment. In their lunch break, the Japanese team also played a match against the Birrong Public School team.
Other activities included a ferry ride across Sydney Harbour to Manly Beach, a city site-seeing tour and a visit to Sydney Aquatic Centre.
At the end of the exchange program, the Japanese and Birrong Sports players exchanged shirts as a long-lasting memory of their experience.
For more information on Birrong Sports Football Club, head to: http://www.birrongfc.com.au/
Unearthing Acres of Talent
With AFL club membership at an all-time high, and two stellar Sydney teams in the official competition, it’s no wonder many new fans are keen to find out more about playing this great Aussie game.
Over the past three years, with the support of Bankstown Sports, the Bankstown Sports BullSharks AFL Club has been able to increase local participation in the sport by 300 per cent, through the Auskick program.
Piggybacking on this local success, AFL NSW/ACT ran an eight-week program at Roberts Park, Greenacre, earlier this year, which targeted grassroots participation and skill development for aspiring Aussie Rules players.
Originally promoted via in-school programs throughout the Bankstown Local Government Area, up to 50 children, from a range of cultural backgrounds, attended each session. There was a high female participation rate, too, no doubt because of the recent success of the AFL Women’s competition. The overarching idea for the Auskick program was to increase participation and membership numbers of the Bankstown Sports BullSharks AFL Club, while showcasing the game of Aussie Rules AFL to young kids in the Bankstown area.
Bankstown Sports supported the Auskick program to the tune of $35 per child for registration, whilst also contributing “Auskicker of the week” prizes and providing gift vouchers for kids and their families to enjoy a meal at the end-of-program presentation, which was held in August at The Acres Club.
The new Auskick program launch tied in well with the AFL’s “Don’t Believe in Never” campaign which showcases Bankstown Sports BullSharks player, Dema, highlighting the cultural inclusion of people of all backgrounds at the grassroot level of the game.
AFL NSW/ACT Local Area Manager, Adam Clough, says Bankstown Sports support has allowed them to facilitate an inclusive program in South West Sydney where AFL participation has previously been low.
“With the ongoing support of Bankstown Sports Club, we’ve been able to establish the Greenacre AFL Auskick Centre in an area of South West Sydney with minimal AFL engagement. We have seen a wide range of cultural communities being brought together to participate in physical activity and learn some new skills in a fun, inclusive program.”
If you are interested in joining the Bankstown Sports BullSharks AFL Club, please contact Tim Hall, Bankstown Sports BullSharks AFL Club President at firstname.lastname@example.org.