The benefits of sport, recreation and physical activity are huge and wide-ranging – physical and mental health and well-being, social connectedness, economic and productivity gains, educational outcomes and more.
So what does this look like in Tāmaki Makaurau? Here are just a handful of examples of sport, recreation and physical activity having a positive impact on Auckland and Aucklanders.
- Significant work in Mangere, supported by CLM Community Sport, through Project Takaro – Youth Project is helping address a desperate need for sporting experiences for local youth. Organising free sport activities for youth and utilising local parks has resulted in a positively connected community in the Mangere area, reduced presence of youth engaged in negative activity, and the local community and New Zealand Police have a more positive engagement with youth groups and communities;
- Harbour Sport’s Nga Tamatoa, a programme for Māori and Pacific boys, uses physical activity and cultural awareness as the vehicles for leadership and relationship skills. The results have seen other schools request the programme, creating an exciting opportunity to evolve it and enhance its impact;
- Sport Auckland efforts in Maungakiekie with a locally led programme comprising physically activity opportunities is enabling children of all ages to be more social and learn new skills in a safe, fun after school environment;
- ‘Gear Up Our Parks’, a Sport Waitākere initiative, focuses on creating a range of options for the community to be active with access to drinking water, sporting equipment, shaded areas and guided exercise including bootcamps and Zumba classes. Positive response has seen a focus on extending installation to more parks, supporting communities to be more physically active in their local green spaces;
- ActivAsian continues to inspire, empower and collaborate with the Asian community through sport and recreation to increase activity and healthy lifestyles. Going from strength to strength, programme activities included active recreational walking groups; a volunteer programme; Have A Go days; and youth activities.
As these examples demonstrate, physical activity, its wide-ranging benefits and its importance to our community are fundamental to the health of our city. Without local government support and funding, the vast majority of these activities would not be possible. This means our growing, increasingly diverse population will not have access to suitable opportunities to participate in physical activity – whether it’s a competitive rugby match, social tennis, outdoor netball, school sports events or kilikiti.
Read here to find out if your candidates responded with their views on sport, recreation and physical activity and what they said: https://aktive.org.nz/our-work/advocacy/candidate-responses/