Giv­ing se­niors a sport­ing chance

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - NEWS -

BEL­MONT res­i­dents older than 60 will be among the first in WA to take part in a new pro­gram that will pro­vide up to $200 to help them keep phys­i­cally and men­tally ac­tive.

Sil­verS­port will start from July 1 and was launched by Premier Colin Bar­nett, Sport and Re­cre­ation Min­is­ter Mia Davies and Bel­mont Mayor Phil Marks at Oa­sis Leisure Cen­tre last Thurs­day.

It will tar­get adults aged 60 and above who hold a Health Care Card or Pen­sioner Con­ces­sion Card to help them join sport­ing clubs or at­tend se­niors phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity classes.

“Keep­ing ac­tive as we age has all sorts of phys­i­cal and men­tal health ben­e­fits, in­clud­ing re­duc­ing the risk of de­vel­op­ing dis­eases, eas­ing chronic pain, and re­duc­ing the risk of de­vel­op­ing de­pres­sion and anx­i­ety,” Mr Bar­nett said.

“Pre­ven­tion is of­ten the best cure and Sil­verS­port is one way the gov­ern­ment can reach out to older West Aus­tralians and help those who might not oth­er­wise be able to af­ford to join sport­ing or re­cre­ation clubs.”

Ms Davies said the fees of up to $200 per per­son would go di­rectly to recog­nised Sil­verS­port clubs, re­cre­ation cen­tres, pro­grams and busi­nesses through their lo­cal gov­ern­ment.

“This will go some way to ease the fi­nan­cial bur­den on se­niors who want to stay fit and healthy,” she said.

Bel­mont MLA Glenys God­frey said it would con­nect more se­niors to lo­cal clubs, gyms and re­cre­ation cen­tres.

“Our lo­cal re­cre­ation cen­tres can be un­der­utilised dur­ing the mid­dle of the day and we want to en­cour­age se­niors to ac­cess pro­grams, fur­ther activate these cen­tres and en­gage in ac­tiv­ity in their lo­cal com­mu­nity,” she said.

Bel­mont Mayor Phil Marks said it would com­ple­ment the City’s Coun­tUSin health and lifestyle aware­ness pro­gram.

“We try to get se­niors in­volved in sport and phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, which also helps their men­tal ac­tiv­ity,” he said.

He said Coun­tUSin had helped se­niors make ma­jor lifestyle changes and im­prove their phys­i­cal health.

The pi­lot pro­gram will also be held in Kwinana, Northam and Kal­go­or­lie/Cool­gar­die.

De­tails for ap­pli­cants and clubs, re­cre­ation cen­tres, pro­grams and busi­nesses want­ing to reg­is­ter as Sil­verS­port par­tic­i­pants or or­gan­i­sa­tions are avail­able at www.dsr.wa. gov.au/sil­vers­port.

Bel­mont Mayor Phil Marks, Premier Colin Bar­nett, Kay Bous­field, Sport and Re­cre­ation Min­is­ter Mia Davies and Max Bous­field at the launch of the Sil­verS­port pro­gram.

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