Sport Australia Hall of Fame Chair John Bertrand AO congratulates the Australian Government on the increased funding for sport and physical activity as announced in the Federal Budget (2019-20) last night.
The Budget delivered a $385.4 million package which will see significant funding and program support from grassroots to the elite, along with increased and enhanced community participation initiatives.
As custodian of Australian sporting history, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame has been allocated $500,000 per year for the next five years, recognising the vital role that we play in preserving and perpetuating our nation’s rich sporting heritage.
Honouring over 170 years of sporting achievement and with 565 of Australia’s greatest sporting stars as Members, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame represents the pinnacle of Australian sporting excellence. Collectively it is Australia’s greatest ‘Sporting Team’.
“In a nation that is passionate and proud of its sporting success, the Sport Australia Hall of Fame serves an essential role in ensuring that current and future generations understand, appreciate and celebrate our sporting history,” said Bertrand.
“Acknowledging and recognising this success is critical as Australia continues to build upon our proud sporting story.
“The Sport Australia Hall of Fame is the home of Australia’s sporting legacy with a charter to preserve its history and use it to inspire the next generation. No role could be more important to Australian sport.”
The Federal Budget also delivered more than $158 million of new investment to Sport Australia and the AIS, to deliver on the national sport plan, Sport 2030.
This includes funding of $40 million to extend the highly successful Sporting Schools program until the end of 2020 and an extra $40 million for the Move it AUS Community Sport Infrastructure Grant Program.
A further $54 million has been allocated for the AIS to enhance development pathways for talented young athletes and to expand on the important work being undertaken in the athlete wellbeing space.
Bertrand, who is also Swimming Australia President, described the $158 million new injection as “game-changing for sport in this country and one that the Sport Australia Hall of Fame Members enthusiastically support.”
“These government initiatives provide opportunities not only for young Australians to achieve their potential both in sport and in life, but also enhance the overall health of our nation. This is key to a well-rounded sporting system,” Bertrand said.
Sport Australia Hall of Fame Member and inaugural Female Legend of Australian Sport, Dawn Fraser AC MBE embraced the announcement.
“Sport has shaped this wonderful country of ours and has shown it has the power to change lives and change communities,” Fraser said.
“I congratulate the Government on its commitment to valuing our Australian sporting history, developing Australian sporting talent and increasing the health of our nation. Providing appropriate funding for our emerging young athletes and community sport is very important for the future of sport in Australia.”
World marathon champion and Chair of Sport Australia Hall of Fame’s Selection Committee, Robert de Castella AO MBE also sang the praises of the funding boost saying, “The five-year funding for the Sport Australia Hall of Fame recognises the unique ability that athletes have to captivate, motivate and inspire the nation and will ensure we can continue to recognise these great Australians in writing our national story.
“It is also good to see that our country’s most talented youth and emerging champions are being recognised and supported with additional funding,” de Castella said.
“This is a critical stage for any high-performance athlete’s development as it lays the foundations and underpins their future that could otherwise be a significant burden on the individual and their families.”
Bertrand said: “The Sport Australia Hall of Fame thanks the Australian Government and Minister for Sport Bridget McKenzie for this investment. It is recognition of the dominant role sport has played and will continue to play in the social fabric of Australia.”
Details on the Federal Budget announcement can be fund here: Sport Australia Media Centre