• Minister for Foreign Affairs launches the Asia Sports Partnerships Program

    Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, launched the Asia Sports Partnership (ASP) program at Kirribilli House on 6 April 2016.

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  • Pacific Sports Partnership program and football: creating a healthier future for the children of Tonga

    Tongan children are learning about healthy eating and healthy behaviours through the Australian-funded Just Play football program.

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  • Batting for choice: the cricket program giving confidence to PNG women

    Cricket is being used to deliver an innovative Australian-funded program designed to get girls to not only bat and bowl but, most importantly, express themselves.

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  • Basketball a big ‘+’ for healthy communities in Asia and the Pacific

    Australia’s sport for development partner FIBA in Oceania is working with communities across the Pacific and now in Timor-Leste.

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Sport for development

Australia has successfully delivered sport for development programs since 2009 through its $49 million Australian Sports Outreach Program (ASOP).
Sport is a globally recognised - and increasingly utilised - vehicle to achieve development outcomes in areas such as health, social cohesion, gender equality and disability inclusion. The Australian Government strongly supports these outcomes through its targeted sport for development programs in the Asia-Pacific region. 
Sport is a uniquely effective agent of change because:

  • Participation in quality physical activity significantly reduces the risk of developing Non Communicable Disease (NCDs).  NCDs such as diabetes have been identified as an urgent health and economic risk across Pacific Island countries, which feature in the world’s top ten countries with the highest rates of obesity (World Bank 2015).
  • Sport provides governments and public health organisations a mass audience platform to deliver high-impact messaging on other health issues (e.g. HIV/AIDS, tobacco and alcohol).
  • Sport fosters social cohesion through engaging with communities experiencing conflict, and by providing opportunities for disengaged groups within society such as youths.
  • Sport supports equality of women and girls through showcasing achievement and challenging gender norms.
  • Sport provides safe and supportive community spaces for women and minority groups in developing countries who are at an increased risk of experiencing violence.
  • Sport helps improve the quality of life for people with disability by fostering inclusion and social interaction. This inclusion challenges negative community attitudes and self-perceptions of people with disability.

In 2015-16 Australia is expanding sport for development partnerships into Asia, building upon the successes of its Pacific programs.  Australian sports programs are currently undertaken or planned in:

  • Afghanistan
  • China
  • Cook Islands
  • Fiji
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Kiribati
  • Laos
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Samoa
  • Solomon Islands
  • Sri Lanka
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste
  • Tonga
  • Vanuatu
Australia is expanding its sport for development partnerships across Asia and the Pacific in 2015-16.
Australia is expanding its sport for development partnerships across Asia and the Pacific in 2015-16.

Last Updated: 20 April 2016