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NZCT Supports Aktive Game Plan AKL

The NZCT has awarded Aktive a grant of $100,000 for Game Plan AKL a new initiative that will give select young people living in Auckland the opportunity to engage in sport and recreation activities of their choice.

“We believe in the power of giving and making a difference in the lives of young people. We know the health and wellbeing benefits that come from being active regularly. It doesn’t just help young Aucklanders. It also helps their family, friends, and the wider community.” - Ambassador Dame Valerie Adams.

“The ongoing impact of the cost-of-living crisis in Auckland has seen many families sacrifice participation in sport and recreation for more immediate priorities, like putting food on the table, paying rent, or staying warm. Cost is one of the greatest barriers to access sport and recreation for young people. Game Plan AKL tackles this challenge of less young people missing out on the benefits of physical activity. We want young people to have the opportunity to choose what they want to do, whether it’s hockey, hip-hop dancing, or having a twelve-month membership at a nearby gym. We don't mind what they choose, but we do care that they are supported, included, and given every chance possible to succeed. We’re incredibly grateful to the generous donors, including NZCT, who have helped to make this vision a reality. It will make a lasting impact on the lives of Auckland's young people through the power of sport and recreation.” - Aktive Chief Executive Jennah Wootten.

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“Physical activity has so many benefits including building confidence and creating lifelong habits. An active Auckland is a healthy thriving Auckland. Participating in a sport shouldn’t be financially prohibitive so taking the pressure away from their families and giving these young people the ability to continue keeping active throughout their high school years can only have positive outcomes.” - Aukland Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson.

Aktive believes calling Tāmaki Makaurau home is something special, but says that is not everyone’s reality. The organisation has therefore made the conscious decision to take an equity approach in everything it does and focuses its mahi and support towards those tamariki and rangatahi who are considered to be less active and missing out on the many benefits of regular physical exercise.

Game Plan AKL will give select young people living in Auckland the opportunity to engage in sport and recreation. Launched on 9 November, the initiative is led by Aktive, but made possible with support from generous donors. Game Plan AKL aims to break down barriers and enable one hundred Year 9 students from ten selected schools/kura across Auckland to take part in sport and recreation activities of their choice. Each young person will receive up to $1,000 per year for five years, allowing them to pursue their passion and give them access to sport and recreation previously not possible.

Championing the initiative are some of Aotearoa’s greatest sportspeople and personalities: Dame Valerie Adams DNZM OLY, Olympic shot putter; Keven Mealamu MNZM, Rugby Union legend; Ruben Wiki ONZM, Rugby League icon; and Laura McGoldrick. Auckland’s Deputy Mayor Desley Simpson has also lent her support to this worthy cause.

Game Plan AKL is made possible through the generous support of donors, with Aktive responsible for the fund and covering all operational costs. With $500,000 already secured to support the first cohort of 100 young people who will commence their five year opportunity in 2024, Aktive is now calling on the giving Kiwi spirit for continued donations to support the next cohort of 100 young people. By growing the donor family, Game Plan AKL can extend its impactful reach.

This is founded in our belief that everyone has the right to an active life, free from barriers that limit access to and participation in play, recreation, and sport. We’re committed to making Tāmaki Makaurau the world’s most active city - te tāone ngangahau rawa o te ao.

The evidence is clear that being physically active has a positive effect on society, improving the wellbeing of people and communities and contributing to the hauora (health and wellbeing) of our tamariki and rangatahi. We know that participation in play, recreation, and sport leads to:

Healthier bodies - improved individual and community health.

Healthier minds - improved educational achievement and mental wellbeing.

Stronger communities - increased social connection and enhanced community wellbeing.

A stronger economy - more productive employees and economic benefits from a strong sport and

active recreation sector.

Our target groups include tamariki and rangatahi who are:

o Māori

o Living in low socio-economic areas

o Disabled

o Female

o Of Chinese, Indian, and Pacific ethnicities.

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