Alcohol & Drug Management
Sporting clubs play a pivotal role in the life of communities, particularly in rural and regional areas. A thriving sporting environment extends beyond the playing field. It’s a place that fosters a culture that is healthy, welcoming, family-friendly and inclusive of all. Sporting clubs are in a unique position to be able to influence healthy lifestyles of their members through off-field aspects at the club.
Ensuring that your club has a positive and supportive club culture means that you consider important issues such as alcohol and illicit drug use. The Club has in place policies and procedures that help educate members and set expected standards of behaviour, along with guidance for committees should an issue arise.
Sports Focus provide a guiding hand to assist clubs in in meeting their legal and ethical requirements when it comes to dealing with alcohol and illicit drugs within the club environment.
Good Sports is an initiative of the Australian Drug Foundation. The program works with community based sporting clubs to promote responsible management of alcohol, to assist in creating a welcoming and friendly environment.
Good Sports’ major focus is to support sporting club committees to progressively change the way alcohol is managed in all activities within the club’s grounds and associated functions.
For clubs that serve alcohol or allow members to bring alcohol to the facilities, Good Sports provides guidance to meet State / Territory laws. All clubs within the Loddon Campaspe region benefit from access to our Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) training at a reduced cost for clubs . For clubs that host post-match functions where alcohol is available, Good Sports provides support to reduce alcohol related risks and change binge drinking culture.
Once a sporting club signs up to the program, our Good Sports Project Officer will assist the committee to work through the entire process with resource materials, one-on-one visits and ongoing support.
Clubs Taking Control is a preventative initiative aimed at supporting sporting clubs to become settings that are protective against illicit drug use. The project supports local sporting clubs to build capacity around early detection of illicit drug use and be able to respond in appropriate and supportive ways.
Clubs Taking Control aims to build a supportive club culture which is safe, healthy and welcoming and ensures clubs are well governed with policies and practices to be able to respond to potential issues associated with illicit drug use. The initiative will also provide clubs with opportunities to ensure club members are informed and can make educated decisions.
There are three elements within the Clubs Taking Control program which include:
- Education Information session – Designed for whole-of-club education. The information session includes 3 speakers; an alcohol and drug nurse practitioner who will speak about some of the physical, mental and social aspects, Victoria Police who will provide policing and legal perspective and a member of Sports Focus speaking about the importance of Club Culture.
- Illicit Drug policy – The development of an illicit drug policy ensures that your club knows how to appropriately respond to any potential issues that they may face. The policy ensures issues are handled consistently and further promotes to members both current and future that the club has a strong stance against illicit drug use.
Establishment of wellbeing team – The establishment of a wellbeing team ensures that members within the club know that they are supported and that if they need help or someone to talk to there are friendly faces within the club that are there for support. The members within the wellbeing team are provided with support and service information that they could possibly refer a club member onto.
If your Club would like more information on the support available please CLICK HERE to contact Sports Focus.
The Sports Focus Local Drug Action Team is currently working on the ‘Heathcote Wellbeing and Connection’ program, looking at connecting and reconnecting Heathcote residents back into the community. Sports Focus are taking our Clubs Taking Control initiative that we have successfully established within sporting clubs over the past three years, into the township of Heathcote.
We will be working with community organisations one on one to provide support, advice and information on inclusion and how to support their local residents who may be experiencing drug and alcohol issues.
Sports Focus are implementing a number of activities in its Community Action Plan, which is focused on building a strong and connected community within the town of Heathcote. The three objectives include:
- Development a community booklet and online directory (Heathcote Connect) to provide information on current community engagement opportunities within sporting clubs and other community organisations to encourage people to join for positive wellbeing benefits, as well as AOD and support services within Heathcote; and where to seek help and support for those affected by AOD issues.
- Establishment of a Heathcote Well-being team made from local community members to support people within the community who are impacted either directly or indirectly by alcohol and other drugs.
- Delivery of up to four (4) AOD information and community connection workshops to members of the Heathcote Well-being team to increase awareness/confidence in supporting local community members.
For more information on the program or to find out how to become involved CLICK HERE to contact Sports Focus.