A new Sport Australia resource launched this week is helping local sporting clubs and organisations across Australia not just survive the COVID-19 pandemic but return even bigger and better.
Sport Australia’s Game Plan is an online diagnostic tool that volunteers and club administrators can use to improve how they operate and replaces Club Health Check.
“We know sporting clubs have had to adapt to our ‘new normal’ so sport can return and that can come with challenges,” Sport Australia Acting CEO Rob Dalton said.
“Many sporting clubs are also run by volunteers who may be time poor or have varying levels of experience in running a club. Our Game Plan tool is designed to make life easier for these clubs by connecting them with information and resources they need to help them operate more efficiently and effectively.”
Clubs can check how they’re performing in 13 areas including four foundation modules that underpin all club operations – Governance, Strategy, Finance and Workforce.
The modules are quick and easy to complete. Once a club has finished a module, they receive a maturity rating, information and resources to help them improve, and an action plan to assign responsibilities and timelines.
“The best part about Game Plan is that it’s not limited to a single user – any administrator of a club can complete modules suited to their role, whether that’s coaching, sponsorship or finance. Clubs can also access the platform at any time to assist them in or outside of season,” Mr Dalton said.
Minister for Youth and Sport, Senator the Hon Richard Colbeck said Sport Australia’s Game Plan is another way the Australian Government is supporting sport through COVID-19 and beyond.
“A key focus of Game Plan is assisting community level sporting clubs and volunteers as they recover from the impacts of COVID-19. Clubs and sporting organisations can access resources to help them grow their membership base as well as support the recruitment and retention of volunteers in a new sporting environment.”
The new tool has already received the tick of approval from a number of sports.
CEO Pony Club Australia Dr Catherine Ainsworth said: “As a national sporting organisation Pony Club Australia is very excited to use Game Plan to assist the continuous improvement of our clubs.”
General Manager Growth, Legal and Strategy at Hockey Australia Michael Johnston said: “Game Plan provides a starting point for clubs looking to improve and some targeted guidance on how they can do it. We know it can be hard to attract volunteers and they often burnout quickly. The more support we can provide, the more volunteers we can attract and retain.”
Delivery Network Lead at Netball Queensland Laura Rathgeber said: “We’re really passionate about reducing the burden on our volunteers. We believe it will give time back to our volunteer workforce so they can put their time where it best suits, and that’s in delivering sport to our community.”
Sport Australia’s Game Plan can be found at gameplan.sportaus.gov.au
Clubs and Associations can also take part in Softball Australia’s Homeplate Ladder program to assess their practices in a softball specific environment.