2011 Sports Without Borders Seasons Greetings

Dear friends,

The year 2011 bought challenges, opportunities and ultimately success for Sports Without Borders. SWB continued programs like the grants program and Youth Action while adding leadership programs for newly arrived communities and the Social Inclusion Through Sports (SITS) program. (Online Version with pics).

A major highlight was Australia’s first National Community Sports Conference in June, organised by SWB in partnership with auspicing partner Australian Multicultural Foundation (AMF) and Our Community. Over 350 people attended this conference. An even larger conference is planned for next year.

In partnership with the Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD), iEmpower, and Department of Justice (DOJ) SWB helped to establish leadership programs for newly arrived communities (particularly those from Horn of Africa). 

To show the breadth of work we and our partners have undertaken, here’s a quick snapshot of our year:

  • Youth Action Day program at Laverton Primary to Year 12 School as part of Cultural Diversity Week
  • DPCD leadership training and pathways program commenced and is now being implemented in 5 local government areas: Moonee Valley, Melbourne, Monash, Greater Dandenong and Greater Shepparton.
  • Our DIAC “Social Inclusion Though Sport” (SITS) program which will see SWB partner with DIAC, Migrant Information Centre, New Hope and East and Central African Communities of Victoria (EACACOV) settlement services operators to deliver a project to support newly arrived young people and their families with introductions into local sporting clubs and activities.
  • The organisation and staging of Australia’s first National Community Sports Conference for disadvantaged communities in June with our auspicing partners AMF and our conference partner “Our Community” based on the themes of “Participation and Inclusion: Sports for all from the ground up”. The conference focused on all disadvantaged groups – Indigenous, Culturally And Linguistically Diverse (CALD), Women and all abilities groups.
  • Our grants program continued to provide excellent opportunities for young people from newly arrived communities to get involved in sports. This was tied to our DPCD project in the Cities of Moonee Valley, Melbourne, Monash, Dandenong and Shepparton.
  • The Federal Government through the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Australian Sports Commission announced in August this year that it would provide Sports Without Borders and its partners iEmpower, grant funding from the 2011-12 Multicultural Youth Sports Partnership Program to support Kynnections, an eight week football tournament. This program will prepare refugee young people to achieve and sustain training, educational and employment outcomes.
  • SWB financially supported the 2010 Australian Somalia Federation Australia tournament project managed by Red Elephant on behalf of the City of Moonee Valley and Melbourne, the Australian Somalian community, Vic Police and Australian Federal Police. The project saw over 4,000 young people and families in the four-day project late last year.
  • The staging of our Department of Justice (DOJ) program with our project partner iEmpower was a program that aimed to educate five soccer teams with participants from refugee backgrounds about the Victorian legal system;
  • SWB partnered with iEmpower to assist it to deliver two, eight-week football tournaments in 2011 - one based in the south-east and the other in the north west. Both proved to be a success and assisted iEmpower in its efforts to engage and assist newly arrived youth to participate in regular football events. Over 1,000 young people were involved and in 2012 there will be another two tournaments following on from the success of the 2011 events.
  • DIAC and DPCD projects are ongoing and due to be completed in 2012. The success of these projects will set a valuable precedent for future projects in the coming years.

There have been a number of staff changes this year. We would like to welcome Athalia Zwartz, as our Sports and Community Project Manager. 2011 also saw Bev Mackie Coup, our Administrative Officer leave us to join Swinburne University and finally Anne King (one of our current Advisory Committee members) left to take on a role as CEO of Table Tennis Victoria. We thank them all for their invaluable contribution and wish them well in their future endeavors. I also thank our Advisory Committee for their input and contribution this year.

And of-course we would like to thank all our staff for their hard work and commitment, particularly Dolores Singh. Importanlty, we would also like to thank our auspicing partner, The AMF and Dr. Hass Dellal as well as his staff Lynn and Brigit for their fantastic, enduring support in 2011.

And finally, a big thank-you to all of you. Without your ongoing support, Sports Without Borders would not be where it is today. Thank you to the Department of Planning and Community Development (DPCD), the Australian Sports Commission (ASC), the ABC Melbourne, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC), the Pratt Foundation, the Scanlon Foundation, Our Community, the ASC and iEmpower, CMY, the Cities of Melbourne, Monash, Moonee Valley, Greater Dandenong, and Greater Shepparton, The Trans-Tasman Business Circle, United Asset Management, Hi Fi, Leon Gorr, our brand and media partners ProjectProject and Network 4 and all newly arrived communities and their service providers across Victoria for your support, hard work and commitment.

Thank you and best wishes for the festive season and the new year ahead.

James Demetriou

Executive Chair

Sports Without Borders