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How ‘change makers’ are making sport more inclusive in Melbourne’s west: Podcast

Melbourne’s west is one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse regions in Australia, with up to 46 per cent hailing from backgrounds where English is not their first language. This has a flow-on effect in sport, particularly in the area of Brimbank, “showing it is among the lowest in Victoria for club-based sport and sport participant registrations, and the lowest for its number of sports facilities, playing fields and courts”.

But Dr Brent McDonald and his colleagues at Victoria University – who have studied the relationship between sporting membership and social inclusion previously – are determined to see a positive change, knowing that inclusion in sport requires a breakdown of the exclusionary and structural practices relating to income, transport, fees and language.

McDonald and his colleagues at VU have just begun a two-year project titled ‘Change Makers: Empowering sports to enhance social inclusion for migrants and refugees’.

McDonald spoke to Campus Review about the myriad barriers facing newly arrived migrants and refugees in relation to social inclusion through sports and how the $330,000 project will operate.

The project was just one of 57 successful applications for an Australian Government social inclusion grant from a pool of 800.

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