Welcoming Clubs

Welcoming Clubs recognises the power of sport to bring people together. We are a growing network of sports and recreation clubs who are committed to building communities where people of all backgrounds have equal opportunity to participate and belong.

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Our Challenge

Sports and recreation clubs make a significant contribution to economic and social capital, and they have traditionally held a unique position in the community as a gathering and facilitation point for physical and community activity.

However, while sports and recreation are a defining characteristic of the Australian identity, modern clubs face complex challenges and they require resources and support to continue to be places where community connection can thrive and grow.

Our Opportunity

In the face of global challenges and uncertainty, sporting codes and clubs have been forced to reassess their value, role and operating models. This presents an opportunity for clubs to define their leadership role in communities and embed inclusive practices in everything they do. What is required is a coordinated framework and approach that:

  1. Provides sports and recreation clubs with the know-how, framework and resources to cultivate a culture of welcome and embrace diversity and inclusion practices;
  2. Benchmarks policies and practices against clearly defined standards that encourage and support ongoing learning, development and success; and,
  3. Enables people from all backgrounds – including recently arrived migrants, refugees and people seeking asylum – to access the support that is often required to participate in sports and recreational opportunities and broader community life.

How We Help

Knowledge Sharing
Supporting sporting codes and clubs to access evidence-based research, policies, case studies and leading practice.

Partnership Brokering
Facilitating cross-sector collaboration and brokering multi-sector partnerships to maximise learning, reach and impact.

Celebrating Success
Sharing good news stories and recognising the existing efforts of sporting codes and clubs that demonstrate leading practice and innovation in welcoming efforts.

Standard and Accreditation
Setting the Standard for cultural diversity and inclusion policy and practice in sports and recreation.

The Welcoming Clubs Standard
– Public Draft & Consultation

The Welcoming Clubs Standard has been developed by Welcoming Australia, through the Welcoming Sport initiative, to provide a framework and support for sport and recreation clubs to progress their diversity and inclusion practices and create a culture of welcome for all members of the community.

The purpose of the Public Draft is to receive feedback from a diverse range of sporting codes and clubs to ensure that the Standard is relevant, accessible and beneficial.

Feedback process:

  1. View the Welcoming Clubs explanatory video (at the top of the page)
  2. Download the Welcoming Clubs Standard – Public Draft
  3. Download the Feedback spreadsheet (Excel format)
  4. Provide comments and suggestions on the spreadsheet and/or via email to: clubs@welcoming.org.au

All feedback will be tracked and application to future iterations will be noted in a centralised document. While feedback will be shared publicly, privacy will be maintained, and all information will be de-identified.

Standard Setting Process

Frequently Asked Questions

The Welcoming Clubs Standard is designed for any organisation that provides or facilitates sport, recreation and physical activity to the community. Including; clubs, codes, national and state sporting bodies, council departments, public and private facilities and community organisations.

Application of the Standard is a key element of the network; however, a local club or community stakeholder can commit to the network without implementing The Standard.

Welcoming Clubs is for all organisations who provide sport and recreation activities, events and programs for the community, including local councils, state sporting bodies, national sporting bodies, codes and other organisations. Additionally, organisations, facilities and businesses can join the Welcoming Clubs network as supporters.

Any club can become a member of the Welcoming Clubs network, by completing a one-page Members Commitment Form and returning it to clubs@welcoming.org.au.

A community stakeholder (codes, government departments, National and State sporting bodies, community organisations, business or other agency) can become a supporter of the Welcoming Clubs network by completing a one-page  Supporters Commitment Form.

Both members and supporters can access the key elements of the network.

The feedback and consultation process is planned to take 3 months including community consultations (subject to COVID-19 safety considerations). Feedback on the Public Draft can be provided until Monday 21st of September.

All feedback that we receive is collated, carefully considered and tracked, including our application of the feedback and rationale. Much of the feedback we receive will be incorporated into the final Standard, however some feedback may be conflicting and/or go against the advice of clubs, codes, government departments and other contributors.

Welcoming Clubs provide support and a framework to guide clubs, including leadership, members & supporters to do the work that a diversity and inclusion officer may traditionally do. The Welcoming Clubs Standard and its application aims to embed inclusive practices across the organisation so that they are core business and empower all club members to be actively involved in welcoming and inclusion.

The Welcoming Clubs Standard provides a framework for clubs and codes to guide their progress of improving inclusion practices. It does not prescribe ‘how to be welcoming’. This is because each club, sport and community will have different resources, needs and goals.

However, we understand that many clubs want to start with tangible action. For this reason, we have developed a complimentary resource that provides examples and case studies of how clubs have or could take action to achieve elements of The Standard. This can be helpful in the early stages to involve the wider club and encourage buy-in from all stakeholders and community members.

More Questions?

Maia Tua-Davidson
Manager, Welcoming Sport