The Victorian Government is using the power of community sport to engage and support African-Australian young people to help them reach their potential.

Member for Dandenong, Gabrielle Williams, today announced funding of $20,000 for Cleeland United Soccer Club through the Sports Alliance for Crime Prevention.

Cleeland United Soccer Club is sharing in $110,000 provided to six African-Australian sports clubs. Sport can help create a sense of belonging and boost engagement, which can support young people to make positive life choices and connect with their community.

This grant will support the club to create positive pathways for young people and give them the skills to manage challenges they may be facing. It includes providing soccer training and homework club to young people, and Zumba classes for their parents to engage in pro-social activities to develop, adapt, and maintain personal and interpersonal skills to reduce tendencies of risk taking and criminal behaviour.

Since 2020, the Government has invested $1.5 million in activities through the Sports Alliance for Crime Prevention, which has helped more than 480 at-risk young people keep their lives on the right track.

Working together to provide positive opportunities for at-risk young people forms part of the State Government’s Crime Prevention Strategy, which is backed by almost $30 million in investment.

The Crime Prevention Strategy sets out a clear plan and a long-term, evidence-based approach to addressing the causes of offending to keep our communities safe.

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Quotes attributable to Minister for Crime Prevention, Natalie Hutchins

We know that African-Australian sports clubs have a unique role in bringing together families and communities, but they often need a little more support to build their teams.”

“This funding will see communities benefit from the power of sport, which can help keep young people away from offending and create brighter futures for themselves.”

Quote attributable to Member for Dandenong, Gabrielle Williams

“The work Cleeland United Soccer Club does to connect with new migrants and at-risk youth is so important, and I am proud we can support them in this work.”