Participation in Community Sport and Active Recreation (PICSAR) was designed to increase participation of Victorians across all levels of community sport and active recreation.
Between 2007 and 2011, VicHealth allocated $20.4 million of PICSAR funding to 43 State Sporting Associations (SSAs), nine Regional Sports Assemblies (RSAs) and nine peak agencies representing community organisations across Victoria.
PICSAR’s main objectives were to:
- increase understanding of the role of sport and active recreation in promoting diversity, social inclusion, positive health and wellbeing
- raise awareness of the barriers and enablers to participation for underrepresented groups
- boost direct and indirect sports participation opportunities for underrepresented groups.
PICSAR had a particular focus on improving social connection and reducing health inequalities to improve community health and wellbeing by targeting those who are under-represented in sport – people with disabilities, Aboriginal Victorians, culturally and linguistically diverse communities, and people from low socioeconomic backgrounds.
Sport and active recreation organisations worked through innovative ways to attract these groups by adopting a more inclusive approach and addressing barriers to participation.
As well as developing long-term, inclusive programs with meaningful and sustainable outcomes, PICSAR also fostered considerable organisational and cultural change in Victorian sports.
PICSAR was a catalyst in funding sports activities that looked beyond the number of people participating, to ‘see’ those who weren’t being engaged. Who was missing out and why? How could they be encouraged to participate?
Experiences and insights gained through the PICSAR program have shaped VicHealth’s priorities and future sports funding.
Read the PICSAR program evaluation More than just sport.