Sebastopol Football Netball Club will embark on a major shake-up of its junior sports structure in an effort to improve the sustainability of junior side of the club.
At a special meeting on Wednesday night the club will attempt to amalgamate its junior football, netball and youth girls football committees to better utilise the club’s volunteers.
Sebastopol president Cameron Morgan said ensuring the club had a stable framework behind its junior teams would play a crucial part in on-field success in the coming years.
“In today’s world there’s not a lot of people who want to give up a lot of time so to have two or three committees is too hard to put together,” Morgan said.
“We at Sebas are handicapped in that we haven’t had a lot of success and people tend to gravitate to success, so the approach is about ensuring we have off-field stability.”
The decision to overhaul the junior structure comes after a number of years where the club has struggled to attract junior talent.
In 2016 the Burra has been forced to pull both its under-16.5 seniors and reserves football sides from the Ballarat Football League due to a lack of numbers.
The club is currently in dialogue with the league and AFL Goldfields about ways to ensure they will be able to field under-16 sides in the coming seasons.
One option being canvassed is allowing Sebastopol’s top-age under-14 players to remain in the under-14 competition for an extra year to ensure they continue to play football at the club, with the ambition of fielding an under-16.5 side in 2018.
AFL Goldfields is currently looking at possible regulations which might be placed on overage players should it allow the concession.
Morgan said it was critical the club and the league acted now to ensure the junior program remained viable in the future.
“We would hate to end up going down the same path as Golden Point.”
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