Last updated: 17 Aug, 2017

The first ever AFL program for blind and vision impaired Victorians is one of six new sports programs that have been greenlighted as part of health promotion foundation VicHealth’s $500,000 Innovation Challenge: Sport.

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The projects will make it easier for less active Victorians to take part in sport activities by offering more flexible, accessible and social ways for people to get involved in sport to improve their health.

The winners of this round of the VicHealth Challenge are:

  • AFL in partnership with AFL Victoria – AFL Blind: A new adapted AFL program for blind and vision-impaired Victorians supported by Blind Sports Victoria.
  • AFL in partnership with St Kilda Football club – SaintsPlay: An approach to develop more inclusive environments at NAB AFL Auskick Centres to improve experiences for autistic children and their families.
  • Little Athletics Victoria in partnership with Athletics Australia - Fast Track: A new community-based athletics program catering for children with disabilities; from culturally diverse backgrounds; and from remote areas.

  • Touch Football Victoria – Families in Touch:  A new touch football community program that supports Victorian families to stay together and play together.
  • Triathlon Victoria - TRIstopme:  A fun, social and inclusive school-based triathlon program that empowers teenage girls to become more active.

  • Leisure Networks in partnership with Wyndham City Council - Healthy Happy Hours: An approach to empower more local community groups within Wyndham City Council to get active at sporting facilities during off-peak times.

VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter congratulated the winning projects for identifying new opportunities to get more Victorians taking part in physical activity to improve their health and wellbeing.

“VicHealth is proud to support such exciting and innovative concepts. We know that being more active is good for the health of all Victorians, however there are certain barriers including age, disability and skill which prevent people getting involved,” Ms Rechter said.

“While many Victorians enjoy playing traditional club sports to keep active, it’s not for everyone. These new sport and recreation programs will give exciting new options for people who aren’t able to take part in traditional sport.”

Ms Rechter said these programs will give more Victorians opportunities to get moving to improve their health and wellbeing.

“Across Australia, people are leading less active lives, with less than a third of Australians getting enough physical activity to benefit their health,” Ms Rechter said.

“We’re excited to be partnering with these organisations as they trial their programs and get even more Victorians active in new and creative ways," she added.

For more information on the Innovation Challenge: Sport visit the VicHealth website at



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