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.