Fe­male-friendly up­grade

The Cobram Courier - - SPORT -

Co­bram com­mu­nity soc­cer pav­il­ion will soon have fe­male-friendly fa­cil­i­ties, thanks to a $472 830 grant.

Moira Shire Mayor Li­bro Mus­tica said the grant from the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment’s Fe­male Friendly Fa­cil­i­ties Fund will ben­e­fit all soc­cer, net­ball and bas­ket­ball play­ers, as well as all par­tic­i­pants of school sport­ing events at Apex Re­serve.

‘‘Women and girls are sign­ing up to play lo­cal sport in record num­bers,’’ he said.

‘‘But many fa­cil­i­ties were built in a by­gone era where change rooms for fe­males were poor or didn’t ex­ist.

‘‘This project will pro­vide a safe and com­fort­able en­vi­ron­ment for fe­males to shower and change af­ter par­tic­i­pat­ing in train­ing and matches.

‘‘It will also as­sist in re­tain­ing and in­creas­ing fe­male par­tic­i­pa­tion.

‘‘Ev­ery player de­serves equal ac­cess to high-qual­ity fa­cil­i­ties and this grant will ben­e­fit ev­ery woman and girl who par­tic­i­pates in sport and ac­tive recre­ation in the area.’’

The grant is in ad­di­tion to a $615 000 from the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment’s Build­ing Bet­ter Re­gions Fund.

Cr Mus­tica said the sec­ond in­jec­tion of funds was a fan­tas­tic out­come for the Co­bram com­mu­nity, which has 10 Co­bram Roar soc­cer teams and 300 chil­dren in the Co­bram Ju­nior Soc­cer As­so­ci­a­tion, as well as ser­vic­ing the net­ball courts and bas­ket­ball sta­dium.

‘‘Co­bram soc­cer has been a thriv­ing sport for 60 years and, for all that time, Co­bram Roar (for­mally Co­bram United and Co­bram Vic­tory) has been op­er­at­ing with­out de­cent clu­b­rooms and chang­ing fa­cil­i­ties,’’ he said.

‘‘This is a much-needed project which will en­able the sport and the club to grow as well as pro­mot­ing healthy, ac­tive and in­clu­sive life­styles.’’

Co­bram Roar pres­i­dent Michael Star­tari said the ad­di­tion of women-friendly fa­cil­i­ties would hope­fully en­tice more fe­males to play soc­cer in the fu­ture.

‘‘Hope­fully it will at­tract more fe­males back to the game, there’s been a bit of a drop off in the last cou­ple of years due to some leav­ing to play footy in­stead,’’ he said.

Mr Star­tari said at present, the lo­gis­tics of hav­ing no fe­male chang­ing rooms had made it tough on the girls who rep­re­sent the club.

‘‘They seem to get thrown around from change room to change room; a lot of the clubs in the Al­bury Wodonga Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion don’t have more than two change rooms, so it can be pretty hard at times,’’ he said.

‘‘With our club we can usu­ally work it out be­cause we have some spare rooms but a lot of the clubs don’t have that op­tion. It should be a lot eas­ier for our fe­male play­ers with this an­nounce­ment.’’

Win­ners: Un­der-13 Co­bram Roar fe­male play­ers Chloe New­ton, An­nie Oliver, An­gelina Watt-Fo­tia and Ella Lisss­ing­ton are just some of the play­ers who will ben­e­fit from fe­male-friendly change rooms at the new Co­bram com­mu­nity soc­cer pav­il­ion.

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