The Direct Aid Program (DAP) is a small grants program funded from Australia’s aid budget. It has the flexibility to work with local communities in developing countries on projects that reduce poverty and achieve sustainable development outcomes.
Through DAP, the Australian Government has supported a number of sport for development programs in 2014–15. These programs help promote inclusion, particularly for women and people with a disability, and improve social cohesion by bringing people in communities together in a positive way.
Through the Australian Embassy in Brasilia, the Direct Aid Program funded Urece Sports Association to provide cultural and sporting activities for people with visual disability.
Goalball is played by participants in teams of three, with the aim being to throw a ball (with bells embedded) into the opponents’ goal. Program funds were used to purchase equipment designed for the visually impaired including balls and sports shoes.
Two athletes involved are now preparing to compete at the Paralympic Games in 2016.
In Brazil, the Direct Aid Program also funded specially designed boats for aspiring Paralympic athletes.
Through the Embassy in Mexico, the Direct Aid Program supported the Transitions Association to build wheelchairs for the Transiciones basketball team, many of who also represent Guatemala in the national team.
In Colombo Sri Lanka, the Direct Aid Program supported the Reconciliation through Sports cricket tournament for youth from the northern and eastern provinces. The tournament brought together village youth teams representing their communities. The tournament was also an opportunity to promote social cohesion, dialogue, reconciliation and new friendships.
More information on the Direct Aid Program