News

Sports Without Borders National Conference

Timas is an unlikely champion. He is a refugee from Sudan who was separated from his family for a year and spent time in a refugee camp in Egypt, before being reunited with them in Australia. He started running when he was 11 and was so talented that he received a bursary to go to St. Kevins College in Toorak. He turned 16 on January 1, 2010 and is now the Australian Schoolboys u/18 800m champion and the 1500m Australian Youth U/18 champion.

In our multicultural society, there are many newly arrived Australians like Timas. They’d love to participate in sport, but don’t always find the opportunity or even know how to get involved. This is at the core of why Sports Without Borders was created. To further this vision, on June 27th, Sports Without Borders will host a landmark conference that will signal a new era of participation and inclusion and a more equitable Australia.The conference will welcome all Australia’s marginalized groups: women, Indigenous Australians, people of all abilities as well as those from newly arrived communities.

Sport is a major tool for promoting social inclusion and social cohesion. For the individual, sport helps develop valuable life skills – co-operation, discipline, respect, and a sense of belonging, community and tolerance. It is these values that the conference will aim to highlight and encourage. For the true benefit of society, sport allows citizens to interact and join social networks, helps new immigrants develop relations with other members of the community, helps combat discrimination, and assists general wellbeing and health. This rationale is highly compelling alone, but it should also not be forgotten that sport is a major Australian industry, contributing to job creation and economic growth and helping to revitalize disadvantaged areas. Sport accounts for $8 billion of the Australian economy and 30% of all volunteers.

All the information shows us that sport has a truly enormous impact on the very fabric of Australian society.  So it’s important, and we’ve got to get it right.  Having groups who are excluded from full participation in their communities is a negative for the individuals who are excluded, for the communities that fail to reach their full potential and ultimately for our nation.

The 2011 Sports Without Borders National Conference will bring together sportspeople, sporting clubs, government, local government workers, sports administrators and educators to learn the facts, hear the stories, and learn about new practices, to tackle the problems and find best practice solutions.  The conference will feature guests including Minister Mark Arbib, Victorian Minister for Sport Hon Hugh Delahunty, Senator Kate Lundy, swimming champion Grant Hackett, SWB Chairman James Demetriou, CEO of Inclusion WA Paul Fleay, AFL National Community Engagement Manager Jason Mifsud, CEO of Centre for Multicultural Youth Carmel Guerra, Australian Sports Commission’s Judy Flanagan, Hootville Communications Brett De Hoedt, Chair of International Year for Volunteers +10 Sue Vardon (A0), writer Martin Flanagan, and Chris Gillard and Raef Akehurst, Co- Founders of creative think tank, ProjectProject .

If you play, work in, administer, umpire, coach, or care about sports and communities, this conference is a must. It is important for our community and absolutely vital for those people who want to become a positive part of our community. As we know, there’s nothing that Australians love more than their sport ... except, perhaps a fair go.

For further information please go to /events/

*A Sports Without Borders grant in 2008 gave Timas the chance to train by allowing him to buy his first pair of running shoes. Further grants gave him the opportunity to travel interstate and compete.

Timas is an unlikely champion. He is a refugee from Sudan who was separated from his family for a year and spent time in a refugee camp in Egypt, before being reunited with them in Australia. He started running when he was 11 and was so talented that he received a bursary to go to St. Kevins College in Toorak. He turned 16 on January 1, 2010 and is now the Australian Schoolboys u/18 800m and the Australian Youth U/18 championship 1500m.

In our multicultural society, there are many newly arrived Australians like Timas. They’d love to participate in sport, but don’t always find the opportunity or even know how to get involved. This is at the core of why Sports Without Borders was created. To further this vision, on June 27th, Sports Without Borders will host a landmark conference that will signal a new era of participation and inclusion and a more equitable Australia.The conference will welcome all Australia’s marginalized groups: women, Indigenous Australians, people of all abilities as well as those from newly arrived communities.

Sport is a major tool for promoting social inclusion and social cohesion. For the individual, sport helps develop valuable life skills – co-operation, discipline, respect, and a sense of belonging, community and tolerance. It is these values that the conference will aim to highlight and encourage. For the true benefit of society, sport allows citizens to interact and join social networks, helps new immigrants develop relations with other members of the community, helps combat discrimination, and assists general wellbeing and health. This rationale is highly compelling alone, but it should also not be forgotten that sport is a major Australian industry, contributing to job creation and economic growth and helping to revitalize disadvantaged areas. Sport accounts for $8 billion of the Australian economy and 30% of all volunteers.

All the information shows us that sport has a truly enormous impact on the very fabric of Australian society.  So it’s important, and we’ve got to get it right.  Having groups who are excluded from full participation in their communities is a negative for the individuals who are excluded, for the communities that fail to reach their full potential and ultimately for our nation.

The 2011 Sports Without Borders National Conference will bring together sportspeople, sporting clubs, government, local government workers, sports administrators and educators to learn the facts, hear the stories, and learn about new practices, to tackle the problems and find best practice solutions.  The conference will feature guests including Minister Mark Arbib, Victorian Minister for Sport Hon Hugh Delahunty, Senator Kate Lundy, swimming champion Grant Hackett, SWB Chairman James Demetriou, CEO of Inclusion WA Paul Fleay, AFL National Community Engagement Manager Jason Mifsud, CEO of Centre for Multicultural Youth Carmel Guerra, Australian Sports Commission’s Judy Flanagan, Hootville Communications Brett De Hoedt, Chair of International Year for Volunteers +10 Sue Vardon (A0), writer Martin Flanagan, and Chris Gillard and Raef Akehurst, Co- Founders of creative think tank, ProjectProject .

If you play, work in, administer, umpire, coach, or care about sports and communities, this conference is a must. It is important for our community and absolutely vital for those people who want to become a positive part of our community. As we know, there’s nothing that Australians love more than their sport ... except, perhaps a fair go.

For further information please go to http://sportswithoutborders.org/events/

*A Sports Without Borders grant in 2008 gave Timas the chance to train by allowing him to buy his first pair of running shoes. Further grants gave him the opportunity to travel interstate and compete.