Female-friendly rooms open at McDonald Reserve

June 30, 2021 BY

South Barwon Football Club president Roger Blacksell, Geelong MP Christine Couzens, South Barwon Netball Club president Chris Doyle and Geelong mayor Stephanie Asher opened the South Barwon Swans Football Netball Club female-friendly changerooms. Photo: SUPPLIED

SOUTH Barwon Swans Football Netball Club players can now spread their wings in new female-friendly changerooms at Belmont’s McDonald Reserve through a Victorian Government grant.

On Saturday, Geelong MP Christine Couzens joined members of Swans at their home game against the local rivals St Albans, to officially open the recent upgrades at the reserve.

Grassroots sports such as football and netball are as popular as ever, but up until recently the Swans players were struggling to cater for growing demand with changerooms built in the last century.

The $564,000 project modernised the facility and features female-friendly change spaces, a combined office and first aid room and netball storage areas.

It ensures the Swans growing ranks of female players will no longer have to use outdated and cramped change facilities and the new areas significantly improve the environment for women and girls, providing home clubs greater flexibility in scheduling practice and matches.

The project also delivered a new netball practice court, tiered seating, a concrete ramp for improved emergency vehicle access to the oval, and security lighting.

The Victorian Government has invested more than $1.1 billion in community sport and recreation infrastructure since 2015.

This includes the recent $55 million budget boost towards sports infrastructure investments to deliver new and improved community sports infrastructure across the state, with a particular focus on providing facilities to encourage participation among women and girls through the popular Female Friendly Facilities Fund.

“For too long South Barwon Football and Netball Club have been hamstrung by outdated facilities, and a lack of female friendly facilities – they now have the facilities they all deserve and can be proud of,” Ms Couzens said.

“The female-friendly upgrades at the reserve also open more opportunities for participation at this popular reserve.

“Better sport and recreation facilities make it easier for Victorians to get back to local sport and recreation when it is safe to do so, and lead healthy and active lifestyles.”

For more information about infrastructure grant opportunities available through the Victorian Government, head to sport.vic.gov.au.

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