The Andrews Government today announced funding of $64.6 million for the redevelopment and expansion of the State Netball & Hockey Centre (SNHC) in Parkville.
Netball Victoria Chief Executive Rosie King said the announcement was a brilliant, landmark moment for Netball, girls and women in sport and future generations.
“We applaud the government’s commitment to creating a level playing field by investing in girls and women’s sport and, through this project, supporting the wellbeing and aspirations of girls across the state.
“The Andrews Government made a commitment to ‘Change the Game’ following the recommendations of the enquiry into gender equality and this critical project delivers on that promise.
“Victoria is Australia’s undisputed leader in the sport of netball, which has been part of the fabric of our state for over a century. Netball is thriving and this announcement is great recognition of the extraordinary value of our sport to the community.
“The Centre is a vital facility underpinning Victorian netball’s successful pathways and this fantastic investment will see more girls provided with the opportunity to be involved in all aspects of our sport – as a player, coach, umpire or in any other capacity from grass roots right through to the elite level.
“In alignment with the government’s commitment to gender equality, it will also include an important new facility fostering women’s leadership in sport, the Women in Sport Leadership Centre,” King said.
The SNHC currently caters to over 5,000 netball participants per week, but it is now operating well beyond capacity with many more prospective players on waiting lists or having to be turned away.
The redevelopment will support increased participation, deliver community and elite programs for participants from across the state and provide additional capability to host major domestic and international events.
“With this announcement, the Andrews Government has invested over $100 million into facilities and programs that support netball in Victoria, constituting the biggest investment in the sport in the nation’s history.
“It is the culmination of several years of collaborative planning between Netball Victoria, Hockey Victoria and the State Government. The netball community has contributed enormous support and we are thrilled to see our vision being realised.
“The State Netball & Hockey Centre is a welcoming and nurturing place for girls and women to play netball at all levels. Through competition they become more confident, more capable and more skillful – qualities that enrich lives and increase community wellbeing.
“Netball is the powerhouse of women’s sport in Australia. With over one million players and nearly 300,000 in Victoria, our sport continues to be the nation’s most popular for girls and women,” King said.