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Aim to make Auckland the world’s most active city

New regional strategy aims to make Auckland the world’s most active city

By 2020 Auckland will be the world’s most active city, under a visionary strategic plan released by a new organisation Auckland Sport.

Auckland Sport was established late last year to provide leadership and direction to the sport and recreation sector in the Auckland region, and to achieve a range of sporting, health, social and economic outcomes.

Auckland Sport Chief Executive Sarah Sandley says the strategy has a strong focus on education, health, social connection, wellbeing and economic development.

“We know that physical activity makes for healthier and happier people, so the strategy is looking to ensure all Aucklanders have access to more and better sport and recreation opportunities and facilities that work for their lifestyles,” she said.

“Auckland has an increasingly diverse population, but sport, like nothing else has the power to bring communities together and create identity. A key area of strategic focus is “More Aucklanders More Active” with the goal of 35,000 more children playing organised sport 3 or more times a week, and an additional 40,000 children being active for 3 or more hours a week by 2020, supported by 2,000 more coaches. We’ll be working with priority national and regional sports organisations to ensure they have plans for the development of their sport in Auckland, then supporting its delivery at club level with our Regional Sports Trust partners.

“Children with sport in their lives do better at school and that has obvious long term benefits for the region as well. Part of our strategy will be to align and develop the sport services being delivered to schools and junior clubs to ensure our kids are getting the best sporting experiences possible so they develop a lifelong love of sport.

“As well, we want to support and build on sport’s contribution to the Auckland economy. Already almost 12,000 people work in sport and recreation in our region, and through the major events we host, such as the Rugby World Cup and the upcoming World Masters Games in 2017 it provides a huge economic return.”

Sarah Sandley says the Strategy has been developed through close collaboration with organisations in Auckland’s sporting sector.

“The Board, Chaired by Raewyn Lovett, has set some big goals, but through collaboration we believe our vision for Auckland is achievable and it’ll bring huge benefits to greater Auckland”.

Auckland Sport’s role will be to foster that collaboration and to advocate for and provide leadership to sport and recreation across the city. Sandley says Auckland Sport will do this by becoming an organisation known for strong leadership, advocacy, innovation and collaboration.

ENDS

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