To better understand why we do what we do, it’s important to answer these questions:
Why is sport so powerful for diverse young people?
New Zealand’s ethnic make-up is changing rapidly. We know sport is a powerful tool to bring people together from diverse backgrounds. It speaks a universal language that allows people to connect and it acts as a stepping stone to bigger individual and community outcomes.
We also know that active young people do better. They have better academic performance. Better behaviour. Better health. Better connections. Better self esteem. Better life skills. And better futures. To learn more about the benefits of sport download the Connect2sport Parents Guide to Sport.
What are the challenges?
Despite these amazing benefits we also know that the playing field is not even and sport participation rates for diverse young people are relatively low at all levels. This is perhaps not surprising given that our research shows that diverse communities experience a range of complex barriers to sport participation.
Our growing ethnic diversity challenges sport organisations to think about how they can better engage diverse communities. With many diverse young people not yet connecting with sport, sport organisations also have to adapt their offerings to remove barriers and better meet the needs of this community. Building relationships and developing trust is a key way to form connections with diverse communities. Our resources give sport organisations ideas on how best to do this.
What are the benefits?
The increasing pool of ethnically diverse people is a rich source of new members, innovative ideas and diverse skills that may inject new life into sports organisations.
Ethnic diversity brings many benefits for your organisation, including:
- Increased membership base, which leads to financial gains
- Better access to a new talent pool with new sports skills and different styles of playing
- Increased respect of ability, cultural background and/or religion
- Increased potential for more volunteer and support services and skills
- Better representation of cultural demographics
- Improved social responsibility
- New ideas and potentially more effective ways of operating or playing
- Better connection with your community.