Major boost for grassroots sport
In reply to Ron Egeberg's letter "Scandal Raises Questions" on Saturday March 31st, I would like to endorse his comments that elite athletes have a responsibility to be positive roles models for their communities.
Further into the letter Mr Egeberg queries whether the community benefits from the Government funding of the Sports & Events Precinct. On behalf of the Ballarat Sports & Events Centre (BSEC) development that was a recipient of part of the Precinct funding referred to in his letter I can assure readers of the community benefit of this funding.
The $9 million commitment from the Victorian Government that was supported by $10M from the Federal Government and $5M from Ballarat City Council was the result of a strategic masterplan for the development of Indoor Sports facilities across the city and Western Victoria region.
A detailed current and future analysis of the needs of grassroots community and club sport combined with a justified need to provide a training and game base for Regional, State and National representative teams and extensive discussion to include daytime use by local schools, FedUni and University of the 3rd Age has ensured that this venue will be over 2/3's full on opening and will reach capacity use within 2 years.
The BSEC will also allow the region to grow its capacity to host major indoor sport and community events that will not only help promote sport and events requiring stadia type seating but also deliver a strong and diverse economic benefit across the region.
This economic assessment has been independently tested and proven as part of the longer-term masterplan to grow the events market.
For these reasons I believe that the Ballarat community will benefit from our part of this development and I am positive that the 7,250 participants that we represent, the hundreds of regional athletes that will see the BSEC as their centre of excellence and the broader local and regional business sector will all be regular and ongoing beneficiaries of this investment in new infrastructure for indoor sports and events at BSEC.
Peter Eddy, Representing Wendouree Indoor Sports.
Missing out on important facilities
With obesity rates increasing in Ballarat according to the City Council’s own report, (P 5, Courier 31 Mar), I applaud the council’s initiative in establishing its new program, “Active Women and Girls Strategy”. The city’s current infrastructure is identified as a barrier to female participation and the assertion given that significant improvements need to be made to basic amenities, lighting and walking tracks. The new strategy is built around creating equitable infrastructure as one of its aims.
Could I remind the Council when it considers this important Strategy at its next meeting, that lack of equitable and adequate infrastructure does not stop at the border of Gillies Street, nor sadly do the obesity statistics. Late last year the Council approved a plan on lighting around Lake Wendouree for the security of those exercising, a long overdue and important improvement, however my concern is that this considerable amount of money for city infrastructure can be readily agreed to, yet the Council has still not approved an up-to-date strategic plan for Miners Rest. Current development in Miners Rest, including the new livestock saleyards, has only an outdated 20 year old development plan to rely upon. Our township of 4,500-plus residents currently lacks vital infrastructure, sporting facilities, a proper flood mitigation plan, medical and retail facilities - we don’t even have a café.
There’s a new playground that council spent considerable time and money publicising, yet most of the families in Miners Rest can’t even reach it without having to walk on the road for most of the way.
Any plan to increase active participation in exercise is a positive step, but it is also important that it be progressed within an overall plan for appropriate infrastructure that will encourage time-poor young families to use local facilities rather than having to travel half way over the city. There are many females in Miners Rest who would no doubt be pleased to be included in Council’s new strategy, but without “equitable infrastructure” their participation is made much harder.
Eileen McGhee, Miners Rest
Thank you, Ballarat,
Thank you, Ballarat, for your ongoing support of the Ballarat Cycle Classic.
As Honorary Director of Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute, I would like to publicly express my gratitude to the Ballarat community for supporting the 2018 Ballarat Cycle Classic.
This event is our largest community fundraiser, allowing our scientists the opportunity to focus their time on internationally recognised research into Immunology, Ovarian Cancer, Chronic Lymphoid Leukemia (CLL) and Histiocytic Diseases. 2018 saw 1900 riders take part, more than ever before. The community came out and showed cancer research in Ballarat wonderful support. With the dedication and commitment of this community, we raised over $185,000. In 11 years this has raised nearly $1.8 million to fight cancer through research.
One hundred percent of participant registrations for the Cycle Classic go to cancer research. This is made possible because of our generous sponsors and over 150 volunteers. Thank you to everyone who donated time, money and resources to make this event possible. We are heartened by the long-term support that our charity events receive from this city.
Professor George Kannourakis,
Honorary Director,Fiona Elsey Cancer Research Institute