Welcoming Clubs


Embracing the power of sport for all.

Welcoming Clubs is Welcoming Australia’s overarching initiative for programs that embrace the power of sport and recreation as a vehicle for inclusion, opportunity and belonging for all members of the community – including, recently arrived migrants, refugees and people seeking asylum. 

Welcoming Clubs links both ends of the sporting continuum
– from the grassroots to the boardroom.

Support for young people and families from diverse backgrounds and abilities to access sport & recreation opportunities and connect with their local community.

Support for clubs, codes, community organisations & local government to establish, progress and benchmark inclusive practices and engage new members.

The Future of Sport

Sport and recreation make a significant contribution to social capital.

Sport can be an open and inclusive activity, in which migrants can develop a network of friends with similar interests. In times of significant change, sport can be a comforting familiarity to young people. Sport can also provide an opportunity for cultural exchange and learning about community norms and values in a safe environment. Participating in sport and recreational activities positively contributes to the development of young people through; capacity and trust building; therapeutic benefits; and, as an entry point for broader participation and engagement.

Changing demographics, limited assets, increasing competition and global crises are challenging the traditional role and viability of sport & recreation clubs and activities.

Opportunity exists in embracing diversity and harnessing its strengths for the betterment and growth of both the sport & recreation sector and the broader community. The future of sport requires a coordinated framework and approach that:

  1. Provides sport and recreation clubs with the know-how, framework and resources to cultivate a culture of welcome and embrace cultural diversity and inclusion practices.
  2. Enables often excluded and under-represented groups — including recently arrived migrants, refugees and people seeking asylum — to access the additional support that is often required to participate in sport and recreational opportunities and broader community life.

How We Help

Welcoming Sport focuses on seven key areas:

Community Engagement
Providing opportunities for individuals and groups to participate in diverse sports & recreation activities, competitions and tournaments.

Community Access
Supporting and facilitating access to clubs, fee negotiation, budgeting, uniforms/equipment, and facilities.

Development Pathways
Identifying and supporting training and employment pathways for referees, officials, and community coaches.

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

Welcome to the Game

Welcome to the Game supports children and young people (and their families) from diverse backgrounds and abilities to access sport & recreation opportunities and connect with their local community.

The program works at the intersection of cultural and linguistic diversity, all-abilities, and sport & recreation and has the capacity to provide specialised support.

Welcome to the Game co-designs and co-delivers needs and strengths-based programs, events and acts as a conduit between young people, sporting clubs, and codes. With a focus on capacity building, independence and leadership, the program aims to increase the visibility of young people from diverse backgrounds and abilities through their active involvement in sport and recreation.

Working hand in hand with Welcoming Clubs, Welcome to the Game also works with and encourages sporting clubs and codes to improve their diversity and inclusion practices and increase participation levels.

Welcoming Clubs

 Welcoming Clubs recognises the power of sport to bring people together.

The program supports a growing network of sport and recreation clubs who are committed to building communities where people of all backgrounds have equal opportunity to participate and belong.

Welcoming Clubs is a coordinated approach that provides the framework, know-how and confidence for sport and recreation clubs to cultivate a culture of welcome and embrace cultural diversity and inclusion practices.

Find out more

The Welcoming Clubs Standard

Numerous campaigns and initiatives exist to encourage welcoming and inclusion efforts in sporting organisations, however, this goodwill and intent needs to be underpinned by a systemic approach.

The Welcoming Clubs Standard establishes the framework for sports and recreation clubs to:

  • Grow a positive and welcoming reputation;
  • Benchmark and enhance the impact of cultural diversity and inclusion initiatives across the organisation and into the community
  • Plan, learn and improve; and,
  • Assess progress over time.

Further Informtation

For information on Welcoming Sport, Welcoming Clubs and Welcome to the Game (Queensland), contact:
Maia Tua-Davidson

For information on Welcome to the Game (Victoria), contact:
Jessica Scannell