Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Belgravia Leisure staff recognised at national inclusion and diversity awards

Belgravia Leisure staff recognised at national inclusion and diversity awards
May 30, 2019

Belgravia Leisure has stood out at the 2019 Inclusion and Diversity in Sport Awards by providing two of the four finalists, including the winner.

Belgravia Leisure staff members Rosemarie Ackland and Aleksei Bondarenko were nominated for the Inclusion Specialist of the Year Award.

At the presentation night at Adelaide Oval on Monday 20th May, Ackland, who is the manager at Somerville Recreation Centre on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula, took out the award.

Ackland was “excited and thrilled” to be receive the recognition but stressed that it was a team effort, stating “when I was receiving the award, I was thinking … it wasn’t just me, it’s always been a team effort.”

She also applauded Belgravia Leisure for its strong focus on diversity and inclusivity, commenting “it’s wonderful that a company is so prepared to put the resources into us running innovative health and fitness programs.”

Ackland was recognised for her 15 years of work in the health and fitness space focusing on ensuring people with a disability, or those suffering from a chronic illness, have a role to play in sport and recreation.

Over the years she has played an integral role in setting up health and fitness programs targeted at people with an intellectual or physical disability, or those people suffering from illness, such as stroke or MS.

One program she is involved with, the Fit and Fun health promotion program with Belgravia Leisure and Victoria Health, has seen people with disabilities engaged in physical activity and participating in educational programs in the Mornington Peninsula.

Fit and Fun includes a wide range of sports, such as dance, basketball, table tennis, cricket and tennis, with activities tailored around people’s individual abilities, needs and interests.

Ackland explained “Fit and Fun is about fitness, but we take a holistic approach.

“We also focus on social connection and community and have all sorts of people from the community come along to speak to the group, such as police officers informing us about cyber security, or a dentist telling us about check-ups and examinations.”

Ackland also helped to set up Stay on Your Feet, a program for older adults established in partnership with public healthcare provider for the Mornington Peninsula. In partnership with the Lung Foundation Australia, she established the local Lungs in Action program for people with chronic illness.

Ackland added “my aim with these groups is making sure everyone can get involved in fitness - it doesn’t matter what area or angle you’re coming from in the community … partnership is the key to the success of the groups.

“I go out and seek those partnerships with local disability groups, community housing, all those groups that potentially people with disabilities or some sort of health issue might tap into.”

Meanwhile, Aleksei Bondarenko, Belgravia Leisure’s Community Development Coordinator for the Yarra Ranges, was a finalist in the Inclusion Specialist of the Year Award.

Bondarenko has been the driving force behind over 25 community projects in the past 12 months alone.

He has collaborated with Local Government, community and sporting groups and service providers to address rising mental health concerns, particularly among youth.

Bondarenko advised “my work involves really focusing on connecting the community to leisure and in particular connecting those in the community who experience marginalisation or discrimination and therefore have barriers to access.”

Bondarenko said Belgravia Leisure is ahead of its game when it comes to inclusion and diversity in sport and he has had strong mentors in the workplace.

He went on to state "I’ve got great support in Dr Jeff Walkley, Belgravia Leisure’s Diversity and Inclusion manager. He is really passionate and comes from 25 plus years of experience working in the inclusion space in sport and recreation.”

One of Bondarenko’s projects involved leading a TAFE student group of more than 25 to raise over $10,000 to provide free access to exercise facilities and support for those experiencing mental ill-health, creating new opportunities and better outcomes for those who experience loneliness and disadvantage.

Recently, Bondarenko has focused on three specific programs: Mental Health First Aid; Move for Mind, which supports students experiencing high levels of stress and anxiety at school; and Kick Start, a program that assists young people in out of home care to develop their employable skill set through a mentoring program.

Bondarenko’s also mentors three inclusion coordinators, who in turn support inclusion in the catchments of local leisure centres.

The Inclusion and Diversity in Sport Awards are an annual collection of accolades given in celebration of the contribution and commitment of individuals and organisations towards inclusion and diversity within the sport and recreation sector.

Related Articles

17th May 2019 - Belgravia Leisure recognised for championing access, inclusion and combating mental illness

24th April 2019 - Belgravia Leisure secures Singleton Council fitness and sport facilities management contract

12th March 2019 - David Hansen announced as Chief Executive of new Belgravia Events venture

14th February 2019 - Belgravia Kids opens first facility in Melbourne’s Hoppers Crossing

12th February 2019 - Belgravia Foundation highlights role of leisure employment in giving young rapper a second chance

6th December 2018 - Belgravia Leisure join supporters of 2019 Swimming Australia’s swim challenge

5th October 2017 - New Belgravia Foundation looks to enhance wellbeing outcomes among marginalised communities

18th November 2014 - Belgravia Leisure makes key new appointments


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

WATERPLAY Solutions Corp

Whether your goal is increasing your centre's revenues or creating an engaging environment, why not add play to your project? If you're looking for stylish aquatic play features, kid-tested…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Waterparks

 
 

NOVOFIT

NovoFit is an exciting and dynamic new company born from two of Australia’s leading commercial fitness equipment suppliers. NovoFit combines over 45 years of industry expertise, delivering state…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness

 
 

LEISURE CONCEPTS AUSTRALIA

Leisure Concepts brings the world’s best fitness equipment brands to Australasia including Eleiko, Atlantis Strength and Merrithew Pilates. With a huge variety of  treadmills,…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Technology / Wellness

 
 

BODY BIKE AUSTRALIA

BODY BIKE® International is a leading manufacturer of indoor bikes with a 20-year track record of creating the best indoor bikes. Stay connected with Body Bike Australia…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness

 
 

HRMWEB

At easyemployer we've come up with a software solution that manages one of your most important, and often most costly, business resources - your staff. We are helping 100s of clients to…

read more

Finance / Fitness / Technology

 
 
 
 

SENtag

Developed in Europe, this innovative system offers a safety management solution for swimming pools that checks individual swimmers via their wristband - monitoring their depth and time. Sensors…

read more

Aquatics / Hospitality / Safety / Technology / Waterparks

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business