Gordon Football Netball Club female players do it tough – they don’t have access to toilets, showers or changerooms.
They change in storage shed cubicles at the Gordon Recreation Reserve.
So the club is hoping the state government’s Female Friendly Facilities Fund will help it improve conditions for their female players and encourage more women to play.
Moorabool council will apply to the state government, on behalf of the club, for $250,000 to build a female-friendly netball “shelter”, including changerooms, a second netball court with competition-standard court lighting and training-standard court lighting for the existing court.
The project is expected to cost $375,000, of which council will provide $75,000 and the club $30,000. They hope to raise $20,000 in in-kind contributions to make up the shortfall.
In a report presented at last week’s council meeting, Moorabool council officers said the club had undertaken significant fundraising for the project, which has also been identified as one of the council’s “priority projects”.
“The overall strategic rationale for the project is sound,” the report stated. “The primary focus of the Female Friendly Facilities Fund is not just on increasing female participation. It’s also about changing cultures within clubs, retaining participants and improving facilities so that they are at least comparable to male sports … completion of this project will significantly improve the culture of the user clubs and enhance gender equity.”
If successful, the project will need to be finished by May 2020.
Although the council notified every Moorabool sports club about the Female Friendly Facilities Fund, only two submissions had been received – from the Gordon Football Netball Club and the Dunnstown Community Centre.
The council resolved to not make a submission on behalf of the Dunnstown Community Centre, saying its project scope went beyond what was applicable to the fund. Officers said they would continue working with the centre to further develop the proposal.
Dunnstown Community Centre proposed an extension of its pavilion, which would include “female-friendly” elements in the player and umpire rooms. But the project also involved building meeting, storage and medical rooms, and a gym.
“The clear link to female participation outcomes need to be further understood and able to be demonstrated,” the report stated.