Football NSW and Northern NSW Football have partnered with world renowned and experienced management consultancy Sport Business Partners (SBP) to research the broad economic, health and social benefits of football in the community.
This study is a repeat of the first Community Impact Study commissioned in 2015 and provides a series of findings based on empirical research that establishes a framework for increased advocacy and lobbying in the lead up to the Federal and State elections to be held in 2019.
Since the release of the inaugural Community Impact of Football study in 2015, football’s total overall contribution to NSW communities has increased by 23% – almost five times the rate of inflation.
According to the independent SBP research the total financial impact of football in 2018 has increased to a staggering $520 million. At this current growth rate, SBP has extrapolated that the total community impact of football in NSW will reach $1 billion by 2025. This figure is purely for grassroots communities and excludes benefits generated by major events or games involving the Socceroos and the Matildas, the Hyundai A-League/Westfield W-League or visiting international professional clubs.
Football NSW Chief Executive Officer, Stuart Hodge stated “The Federal Government’s AusPlay survey continues to report Football as the largest team-based sport in NSW with over 629,000 participants, making it the perfect vehicle to support the development of inclusive and healthy communities”.
Hodge further commented that “The physical and mental health benefits delivered by Football to the NSW community are simply astonishing. The annual community contribution which football provides through reducing common diseases is valued at $4.6 million. Our diverse and accepting culture towards people from all backgrounds and abilities, serves to unite and strengthen our community bonds and further emphasises football’s social impact to the state of NSW.”
The research invited members of the community to comment about the role that the sport plays in their daily lifestyle with one respondent stating, “As a migrant with no friends growing up in Australia, football gave me friends for life who only cared about my love for football and not the colour of my skin.”
Northern NSW Football Chief Executive, David Eland added, “Football brings people together of different ages, genders and backgrounds thereby creating greater diversity within individual social networks. Our summer football and walking football programs clearly reinforces our philosophy of football ‘anytime, anywhere, anyhow with anyone’.”
“Our Community Impact of Football study further emphasises that a strategic investment in football infrastructure pay dividends and delivers a return on investment for the NSW economy. With an aging population and rising health care costs as a result of chronic diseases, this study demonstrates that participation in football can and does deliver significant health benefits. By providing appropriate facilities, participants will be able to play football more consistently throughout the year in safe and inviting settings, leading to long term engagement with the sport, and an overall healthier society.”
View the associated video clip that summarises the Community Impact of Football and download the full report at here.