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Sport, recreation, arts, culture, community and hobby groups (Volume 14)

Victoria’s sport, recreation and arts sectors play an important role in detecting and preventing child abuse. The Victorian Government continues to work in collaboration with these sectors to improve child safety and achieve cultural change within the community to better protect children from harm. 

Child Safe Standards within the Victorian sporting sector 

The Victorian Government continues its partnership with Vicsport, the peak body for sport in Victoria, along with state sporting associations and state sport and active recreation bodies, to support all organisations to comply with the requirements of the Victorian Child Safe Standards (Standards).

Through funding agreements between the government, via Sports and Recreation Victoria, and sport sector governing bodies, the government requires these bodies to meet ongoing requirements including:

  • implementing and maintaining their own policies and procedures to protect children and young people from harm, and
  • complying with the Fair Play Code of conduct, which aims to encourage appropriate standards of behaviour to enable every Victorian to be involved in sport that is safe, welcoming and inclusive.

Targeted child safe resources for sport and recreation organisations

In January 2021, through Vicsport, the Victorian Government supported the development of an extensive suite of resources to assist sport and recreation organisations to proactively implement child safe policies and procedures. These resources included information sheets, templates, guides, presentations and posters. 

The free national online Play by the Rules platform, which the government contributes to significantly, continues to be a key support mechanism for state and community-level sporting organisations to learn about preventing and responding to child abuse in sport. During 2020-21, the online Child Protection course offered through the platform was completed by 4,774 Victorians – the second-highest participation rate in the country. 

Together More Active

Together More Active is a Victorian Government funding program that provides support for Victorian sport and active recreation governing bodies to increase participation and enhance sector capability. Funding is open to organisations on the condition they meet several requirements, including being incorporated, complying with the Victorian Government’s Fair Play Code, and adhering to the Standards. 

Funding is available for a wide range of initiatives and projects, including those aimed at effectively embedding the Standards within an organisation. In 2020-21, 68 per cent of funded state sporting associations indicated they had used Together More Active program funds to provide training for, and/or to promote the Standards to their member clubs, leagues and associations. 

Additionally, 21 per cent of funded state sporting associations indicated they used funding obtained through the program to complete child safe related project work in 2020-21, such as updating organisational child safe policies and procedures, and embedding child safe practices within strategic planning.