We are privileged to have received Jump Start! funding from VicHealth enabling us to expand our community inclusion and diversity programs by employing Aasta O’Connor as our inaugural Inclusion and Diversity Manager from August 2022 to July 2023.

Jump Start! is all about community-led initiatives to build healthier communities through sport, active play, art and food, focusing on children and young people to 25 years of age.

Partnering with VicHealth

Our grant submission emphasised the social-value programs already undertaken by the Darebin Women’s Sports Club and committed to expanding these with particular focus on the physical, social and psychological health and wellbeing benefits that comes with inclusion and participation in sport and active play.

Board Member Emily Booth assisted in writing and submitted the proposal to Vic Health as part of her work with looking after the club’s community partnerships.

Our club has so many talented and passionate alumni and supporters so we are well placed to provide first class sports programs in the wider Darebin community. Our community initiatives have been really well received. We have seen some really important community outcomes of our programs, including in building confidence in young girls generally and also more specifically in children with disabilities in the case of the Footy Funability program.

Emily Booth

Darebin Board Member

The opportunity presented by the JumpStart grant to build our community programs is incredibly important says Emily Booth, allowing the club to pay for both coordination and delivery of these programs. “We also think that there is so much more we can do with additional investment because the JumpStart grant only lasts for one year and we want to extend these initiatives beyond the year and scale up what we already offer. We are really looking for partnerships with business and government to enable this and fully believe that these organisations would find it a worthwhile partnership, given the benefits and impact we can show.”
It has also been good to be able to plan for regular programs to resume after the long breaks due to COVID. Jump Start’s goals are to inspire, mobilise and support children and young people to be active in neighbourhoods and spaces where they feel safe and welcome.

Darebin’s program aims to reach out to groups across the community who are often excluded from sport and we look forward to sharing more about the activities in 2023.

This partnership is significant because it gives our club a chance to create some special programs. It provides us with resources to learn more about our community, and to keep ensuring our club is a place where people feel included and love to belong to

Want to learn more about the Inclusion and Diversity Programs at Darebin?