Participation levels have more than doubled under a junior development programme run by AFL New Zealand this year.
The organisation, which aims to increase participation in Australian Football, ran two new programmes this year after ASB Community Trust granted $40,000 towards the costs.
As a result, 16,504 players joined in the eight-week AFL KiwiKick programme – up from 7,864 the year before. A further 13,719 students received an AFL KiwiKick introductory taster session.
Meanwhile, the Hawks Cup has grown from a junior competition in 2010 to include both a junior and senior secondary school competition in 2011. This has seen 931 participants take part in the six week programme and a further 4000 students received a Hawks Cup taster session.
“Thanks to ASB Community Trust’s support, we have given our sport a significant impetus in showcasing and introducing children between the ages of 5 to 17 to AFL,” says AFL New Zealand CEO Robert Vanstam.