Football Australia has launched “Game Changer”, a program to support community football clubs across the country to create an effective and sustainable environment.
Introduced as part of Football Australia’s Legacy ’23 Program an initiative proudly supported by the Australian Government, through the Australian Sports Commission (ASC), Game Changer aims to protect and enhance affiliated clubs, make them stronger and more resilient, lead them in building welcoming and inclusive cultures, and educate them on positive environments for players, coaches, volunteers, and officials while planning for long term viability and success.
Upon launching the initiative, Football Australia CEO James Johnson spoke to the important role football clubs play within their local community and how the Game Changer Program aims to ensure that affiliated clubs across Australia are thriving both on and off the field, whilst creating a welcoming environment for all participants.
“Community football clubs and the communities they harness, are the lifeblood of our game and without their passionate commitment, football would not be the number one team participation sport in Australia,” Johnson said.
“Supporting the health, sustainability and standards of our community football clubs is a priority for Football Australia, which is why the Game Changer Program was developed with support from the ASC.
“The Game Changer Program is a Football Australia Legacy ’23 initiative and has been designed to not only support community football clubs to be the very best they can, but through the star rating system, provide current and future participants with invaluable insight into how each club is run.
“A vibrant community football scene underpins the success of the Australian football ecosystem, and we believe the Game Changer Program will help foster the next generation of elite footballers, coaches, officials and administrators,” Johnson concluded.
Game Changer comprises the completion of a series of tasks and modules, including modules through Game Plan (ASC’s free online platform), which relate to the themes of lead, empower, support, and celebrate and cover topics include (in no order): Women & Girls in Football, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Safeguarding, Finance, Governance, Workforce, Participation, Diversified Partnerships, Infrastructure, Stakeholder Alignment, Marketing & Communications, Values and Behaviours, Research & Insights, Technology & Digital, plus Strategy, Roles & Responsibilities. CLICK HERE to access the Resource list.
As clubs complete these tasks and modules, they will obtain a Game Changer Star status, starting at one, moving to two, and upon completion of all tasks and modules, the respective club will graduate to a three-star status.
Upon progressing through the Star rankings, clubs can access recognition and rewards in the shape of funding, training courses, special appearances, experiences, discounts, unique football opportunities and much more. CLICK HERE to access an overview of the Star ranking system.
Roll-out and implementation of the Game Changer Program has already commenced, as led by Football Australia’s Community Department, and supported by the eight state and territory Member Federations.