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Bowling with Babies program awarded Sport Development Initiative of the Year
With a focus on health, fitness, family and community, Bowls Victoria’s Bowling with Babies program has won the Victorian Sport Development Initiative of the Year at the Victorian Sports Awards.
Supported by VicHealth, the Bowling with Babies program was created to complement the state government’s strategy around women participating in sport and growing engagement. The program seeks to assist less active parents to become more active and enabling time to focus on their physical well-being in a relaxing and comfortable environment, with their baby.
Explaining the program, Bowls Victoria’s Participation Manager, Neil Gray stated “Bowling with Babies essentially grew out of my own experiences as a parent and learning from other sports. Activities for parents with children under two are often stagnant, indoor activities.
"Our program sought to change this by offering an outdoor activity that focused on health, fitness, family and community.
“The family-friendly environment of bowls clubs is a perfect location for a non-competitive physical activity specifically designed to fit the needs of new and expecting parents."
The program is also helping to promote female participation in sport and reviving lawn bowls as a social sports option for women.
Now in its second year, the program has recently celebrated its 1000th participant with the numbers continuing to grow steadily at participating clubs each week. Approximately 30 clubs are now offering the program with sessions seeing an average of 10 participants each week.
Each club has worked closely with Bowls Victoria to ensure their facilities are suitable and their club is welcoming to all families – including dedicated and supportive volunteers.
Since the program first started in 2017, Bowls Victoria has offset the setup cost to clubs by providing change tables, sun shades, blankets, merchandise and marketing material.
18th February 2019 - Bowls Victoria launches new junior bowls program, Roll Up
7th February 2019 - VicHealth grants to encourage community sport programs
4th September 2018 - Victorian health campaign sees positive results with more women getting active
22nd April 2018 - VicHealth campaign looks to overcome barriers to women’s activity
1st February 2017 - Bowls rebrands for a new age
8th December 2016 - Landmark study finds sport struggling to keep youth engaged
25th August 2012 - Bowls launches new radio program
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