The New South Wales Government has committed to investing $207 million over four years to encourage children to be more active outside school, by offering a $100 rebate for sporting and fitness related costs.
NSW Treasurer, Dominic Perrottet announced as part of the budget that the ‘Active Kids Rebate’ will be available for every family with children in school from early next year. Families will be able to claim the rebate on items such as sport registration and membership costs, as well as swimming lessons.
From 2018, parents in NSW will be able to claim up to $100 per school-aged child, per year, as a voucher to reduce the cost of after-school and weekend sport, and active recreation activities. The program is aimed at helping to reduce overweight and obesity rates of children by five per cent over 10 years.
These activities could include sports such as:
- swimming classes or lessons,
- athletics and others.
Sports Minister Stuart Ayres said the annual rebate would be available for every school child wanting to get involved in community sport and fitness.
“We would love to see more young people participating in sport, we know promoting active habits early is a key factor for ensuring a generation of healthy kids and tackling rising obesity rates,” Mr Ayres said.
Parents will be able to register online and can take a sports voucher to a registered sports club or provider to receive the rebate.
Mr Ayres was especially keen for parents of girls to take up the offer, and called on parents and sporting codes to use the introduction of the Active Kids Rebate to spark a major increase in the participation rate of girls in sport.
“Only a third of girls aged between 5-8 years participate in organised sport or fitness outside of school hours, and for females aged between 15-17 years the participation rate is 8% less than the state average.”
Further detail about the Active Kids voucher is available on the NSW Office of Sport website https://sport.nsw.gov.au/activekids
Active Kids Rebate: join the discussion
This Active Kids Rebate will reach approximately 500,000 children annually. The $207 million investment is a great start, but what other options do Government and Local Council have to activate their young community?
The National Sports Convention taking place in Melbourne from 20-21 July will be exploring this challenge by bringing together global leaders and Australia-wide case studies.
With over 85 speakers at the convention, a key focus will be on young people and participation. There are international speakers advising strategy such as:
- Jennie Price, Chief Executive – Sport England. England: Growing Participation in Local Settings.
- Kate Palmer, Chief Executive Officer – Australian Sports Commission. Australia: Reimagining Sports Policy to Position Australia as the World’s Most Successful Sporting Nation.
- Peter Miskimmin, Chief Executive Officer – Sport New Zealand. New Zealand: Locally Led Planning and Delivery.
- Cathy Jo Noble, Executive Director – Canadian Parks and Recreation Association. Canada: A Framework for Recreation.
The program also includes a number of presentations and case studies from city councils including Auckland, Blacktown, Brimbank, Logan and Maribyrnong.
More information is available at the convention website: www.nationalsportsconvention.com.au.
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