Football NSW clubs across the state will benefit from over $7 million to repair and rebuild damaged facilities impacted by the February or June floods thanks to the Essential Community Sport Asset Program (ECSAP).
The Essential Community Sport Assets Program is jointly funded by the Federal and NSW Governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, as part of the broader Community Local Infrastructure Recovery Package (CLIRP).
ECSAP is in place to help communities assess, repair, reconstruct and build flood resilience into sport facilities, preventing stoppages in usage and ensure a quick return to sport after natural disaster.
Just over $36 Million was distributed to sporting organisations around the state.
Lowland Wanderers Soccer Club (LWSC) have received $67,000 towards the installation of drainage on Field 1D at Bensons Lane Complex. The work will improve field resilience and sustainability.
LWSC are continuing to rebuild after the devastating floods that hit the Hawkesbury region back in 2021. This funding will go a long way in servicing the loyal participants at LWSC, who boast a strong women’s participation rate of 29% and have seen 17% growth in grassroots football over the last 4 season.
Macarthur Football Associations local clubs will also benefit from the program with upgrades to fields including Appin Park, Willis Park, Eschol Park Sporting Complex and Douglas Park. These projects total up to over $1.4 million. All four locations will be undergoing sport field rejuvenation that includes slit drainage, aerating and other additional works to ensure longevity.
Macarthur Football Association for many years have accommodated for over 9,500 players. More notably, female football within the region has seen a 13% increase in participation. Year to date participation numbers show Macarthur is currently tracking 20% ahead of last season’s registrations numbers.
“A good proportion of this funding program is going to towards fields much needed field rejuvenation,” NSW Manager – Government Relations, Funding and Infrastructure, Daniel Ristic said.
In NSW, 48% of football fields do not have drainage.
“We know the presence of drainage and irrigation infrastructure is considered to have a significant impact on the continued capacity of playing fields and is required to enable effective ground maintenance,” Ristic stated.
“Without this infrastructure in place, playing fields are significantly restricted in terms of the capacity to accommodate use”.
The Essential Community Sport Asset Program and alongside other infrastructure grant programs continues to assist Football NSW, associations, and clubs in improving existing venue capacity which is a key pillar of the NSW Football Infrastructure Strategy.
NSW has been plagued with severe weather over the last few years. ESCAP is playing an integral role in ensuring facilities return to their previous playable state allowing football to return to full capacity.
The full list of successful applicants for Essential Community Sport Assets Program can be viewed here
Further grant opportunities like the Essential Community Sports Assets Program can be found here under the “available grants” tab on the Football Facilities website.