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Volunteers the backbone of Australian sport

Volunteers the backbone of Australian sport
August 21, 2014

A new study confirms that Australia’s 2.3 million sporting volunteers are the backbone of Australian sporting organisations, highlighting that sport would be unable to function or even exist without them.

Commissioned by the Australian Sports Commission, Market Segmentation for Volunteers, the most comprehensive study ever undertaken of Australia’s 2.3 million sporting volunteers looked at why Australians become sporting volunteers.

In identifying the core attitudes, motivators, needs and barriers that underpin people’s decisions to volunteer in sport, the study reveals the characteristics of the army of people who make the largest contribution to shaping the national sporting landscape. 

Releasing the study, Federal Minister for Sport Peter Dutton said the efforts of unpaid sports volunteers was worth billions of dollars. 

Explaining that the study was an invaluable resource for sporting clubs and organisations to attract members and plan for future growth, Minister Dutton stated “there is not one person who has ever played sport in Australia who does not have a volunteer to thank for being given a chance to participate. 

“It is a simple fact that sport in Australia would not exist without volunteers. There are more volunteers in sport than any other sector.

“Volunteers play a direct and hands on role in improving the health of our communities as well as creating opportunities for our next Laura Geitz, Michael Clarke or Tim Cahill.” 

The study estimates that 23% of Australians aged 14 years and over would consider volunteering in club sport in the next 12 months. Three in four of these, or just over 2.8 million people, could potentially be first time club sport volunteers.

Minister Dutton said organisations needed to ensure this first engagement was positive to encourage people to continue volunteering. 

The study shows that nearly all club sport volunteers, 89%, were satisfied with their experience, which presents a great opportunity for sports to capitalise on the volunteers’ enthusiasm and enhance their sport. 

Minister Dutton concluded “anything that helps sports and clubs understand how they can attract more volunteers, retain existing volunteers and keep volunteers interested and happy is crucial to support Australian sport and increased community activity levels.”

Click here to view the report at the National Sport Research website.

6th December 2013 - SPORT MINISTER RECOGNISES THE VALUE OF VOLUNTEERS

5th December 2013 - RUGBY WORLD CUP GENERATES LEGACY FOR VOLUNTEERING 

15th August 2012 - WITHOUT VOLUNTEERS AGRICULTURAL SHOWS 'WILL CEASE TO EXIST'

30th October 2009 - SPORT EMPLOYS 110,000: SUPPORTED BY 1.7 MILLION VOLUNTEERS


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