Newly crowned A-League Premiers’ Plate winners the Western Sydney Wanderers today helped launch a partnership between Football Federation Australia (FFA) and the Australian Government’s Active After-school Communities (AASC) program – aimed at keeping students active and healthy.
Representing the Minister for Sport Kate Lundy, Member for Chifley Ed Husic said the new partnership was designed to encourage children to participate in football through a modified version of the sport, based on the FFA’s Optus Small Sided Football program.
The new program, launched along with 300 students at the Western Sydney Wanderers’ football fun day at Rooty Hill, is the first official partnership the FFA have had with the AASC program and includes a jointly developed national coaching education resource based on the Playing for Life philosophy.
The Australian Sports Commission’s AASC program is run in more than 3200 schools and after school care centres in all states and territories with approximately 190,000 children participating each semester. It provides children an opportunity to try a variety of sports and other structured physical activities aimed at encouraging children to develop a love of sport.
“Football’s massively popular in Sydney’s west – especially with young children,” Mr Husic said.
“So, that’s why it’s great to have the Western Sydney Wanderers on board to promote the Playing For Life philosophy to help keep primary school students active and healthy,” Mr Husic said.
“Promoting sport and exercise with young people can help them dodge lifestyle related health conditions such as obesity and Type 2 diabetes – conditions local GPs tell me are holding back many in our community.
“The Playing for Life philosophy helps young children enjoy playing football in a fun and safe way.
“This new resource will be provided to all community coaches who are delivering the very popular football or futsal programs across the country.
“The AASC program is the perfect platform to promote modified football programs. A partnership like this allows children to experience new sports in an accessible way and it also encourages them to be more active.
“The AASC program has been instrumental in building greater sport participation rates among primary school children and it is great to have the FFA on board.”
More than 300 local AASC program primary school students along with the Wanderers players were part of the launch at the Blacktown International Sports Park to nationally launch the latest version of the game, which will be rolled out at AASC sites in the second school term.
More information: www.ausport.gov.au/aasc