Last updated: 15 Feb, 2017

VicHealth’s Innovation Challenge: Sport is awarding ten sporting bodies a total of over $500,000 to get more Victorians moving through sport.

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Five exciting new 18 month pilot projects will take traditional sport in a new direction to get less active Victorian communities involved in sport.

Pilot projects include:

  • AFL Victoria - Female Indigenous Program
    An initiative for young indigenous women aged 16-20 years old about providing more opportunities to play AFL through carnivals, competitions and camps across metropolitan and regional Victoria. The program will also offer training and education for these women to develop their communication and decision making skills, resilience and a strong sense of cultural identity.
  • Bushwalking Victoria Club - Escaping Your Comfort Zone
    Body positive hiking for plus size women.  This program aims to improve the self-esteem of plus-size women through a specialised hiking program, combined with a supportive friendship group.
  • Cricket Victoria in partnership with Proud2Play – Proud Cricket
    An education program for Victorian Cricket Clubs to foster a more supportive culture for LGBTQI young people and increase their participation in cricket.
  • Collingwood Basketball Association – Stay, Play, Lead and Succeed 
    A mentoring program for young people, predominantly of South Sudanese backgrounds, to keep them engaged in club basketball through a leadership development approach.
  • Sport Central in partnership with Golf Victoria – Ballarat District FlexiGolf Pass
    A new initiative among Ballarat District Golf Clubs to engage local families and golfers in a more convenient and affordable manner, with shorter game formats and casual memberships.

VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter said: “With less than a third of Victorians getting enough physical activity every day, we know sports need to come up with new, creative ideas to get people moving.

“Traditional sport isn’t for everyone, so our Innovation Challenge: Sport looks to kick-start promising ideas that can get Victorians - many whom are sometimes overlooked by mainstream sport offerings - involved in physical activity that appeals to their specific needs.

“It’s about getting people physically active and socially connected with their community – two of the best reasons I can think of to get involved in sport.”

In addition to the five pilot projects, VicHealth is providing second year funding to three previous Challenge winners to further develop their long-term visions and supporting two new funded partners with market research investment to help with future planning.

The next VicHealth Innovation Challenge: Sport funding round opens on 27 February 2017.

For more information about the opportunity for your sport, go to


Media contact

For interviews contact John Fulcher, Communications Manager VicHealth on 0412 978 263 [email protected]