It’s been a big few days for sport and recreation in our state with the Victorian Government announcing gradual easing of restrictions and the unveiling of more funding to support community sport across the state.
From 26 May, public playgrounds, outdoor gyms and skateparks are open providing greater opportunities for Victorians to get active while adhering to gathering and physical distancing restrictions.
From 1 June, groups of up to 20 people can participate in sport and exercise activities outdoors, provided they maintain physical distancing of 1.5 metres and they are not competitive. Indoor and outdoor swimming pools can also open to a maximum of 20 patrons per separate enclosed space and a limit of 3 persons per lane in each pool.
And from 22 June, indoor recreational facilities, including sport centres, gyms, health clubs and class fitness studios, can open with up to 20 people allowed per separate enclosed space, subject to the four-square metre rule and up to 10 people per group/activity. Alpine resorts will also be able to open signalling the start of the Victorian 2020 ski season.
Changes to these dates will be subject to the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Officer. For detailed information on Victoria’s restriction levels, please visit the DHHS website.
Understanding how the restrictions will ease over the coming month will help many of you with your return to play plans. We have published return to play guidance for community sport and professional sport on the Sport and Recreation Victoria (SRV) website and will continue to update this in accordance with the latest advice from the Victorian Chief Health Officer.
To further support the sport and recreation sector as it gets ready to return to play, I’m pleased to report that $68 million has been allocated towards community sport infrastructure as part of the Victorian Government’s $2.7 billion Building Works package.
From Thursday 28 June, local councils and Alpine resort boards, with the support of local sporting bodies, will be able to apply for funding of up to $10 million for ‘shovel-ready’ projects that will create jobs and support local businesses. Information on how to apply will be published on the SRV website shortly.
I’m also pleased to report that applications are now open for the $40 million Victorian Community Sport Sector Short-term Survival Program as part of the Victorian Government’s Experience Economy Survival Package. This funding will support 12,000 community sporting clubs and recreation organisations to keep operating while they prepare to return to play.
Eligible organisations will be able to apply for funding in four categories, with grants available for amounts:
- Up to $350,000 for large state sporting associations
- Up to $200,000 for smaller state sporting associations, regional sports assemblies and academies, and other state sport and recreational bodies
- Up to $15,000 for associations and leagues
- Up to $1,000 for individual clubs.
Also opening later this week is the National Sport Organisations and Professional Clubs Coronavirus Short Term Survival Program, which will provide $16 million worth of grants in two streams. The first is for professional teams and national sporting organisations with professional teams, with around 45 organisations eligible to apply for a total funding pool of $9 million.
The second stream is for national sporting organisations of Olympic and Non-Olympic sports. There are around 30 organisations eligible to apply for a total funding pool of $7 million. Please keep an eye on the SRV website for further details.
We are also working with Racing Victoria, Greyhound Racing Victoria and Harness Racing Victoria to roll out funding for the Victorian Racing Industry – COVID-19 Emergency Funding Assistance Program as part of the Experience Economy Survival Package.
This package, along with Building Works, will be crucial to ensuring sport, recreation and racing organisations survive this pandemic. This is critical to our economic and social recovery, and to our community’s physical and mental wellbeing.
As always, we’re reminding individuals and organisations to follow the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Office and the Department of Health and Human Services in order to slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). The situation continues to change and we urge you to regularly check coronavirus.vic.gov.au for updates.
If you have any queries about the updated restrictions for sport and recreation or the guidance available to your organisation, please first visit the DHHS website and SRV website to read the latest information. For any additional queries, please contact the DHHS COVID-19 hotline 1800 675 398 and select option two to speak to someone who can help or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Head | Sport, Recreation & Racing
Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions