The collective success of WA’s professional sporting teams is currently the envy of the nation, but it is the collective influence of the state’s peak clubs on the health and wellbeing of communities that is perhaps their greatest achievement.
While West Coast’s 2018 premiership win provided a great source of pride for the club’s supporters, it is the club’s, and the Fremantle Dockers’, contributions to grassroots footy that has more impact on the community.
Both clubs poured $4.9 million in royalties to the Western Australian Football Commission in 2018, helping to facilitate the 342,433 Western Australians who played footy in 2019, with nearly 100,000 of them being females.
NBL: Perth Wildcats
Unquestionably the most successful basketball team in the nation with nine championships (four more than its nearest competitor), the Perth Wildcats’ commitment to community is also second to none.
Wildcats players made 250 school visits in 2018, engaging directly with the next generation of basketball fans, not only helping them hone their skills on the court, but also promoting healthy living and a strong anti-bullying message.
A-League: Perth Glory
Perth Glory’s most successful season to date didn’t shift its focus from its community enrichment programs, which are designed around supporting its three charity partners – Parkerville Children & Youth Care, Therapy Focus and Save the Children.
Finishing the season as A-League premiers and grand finalists, the Glory was also closely connected to Healthway’s Go for 2&5 nutrition message.
Suncorp Super Netball: West Coast Fever
Flagship team West Coast Fever may have fallen just short of ultimate glory with a grand final loss, but 2018 was nonetheless a landmark year for Netball WA.
More than 230,000 people participated in netball in WA last year, as grassroots programs continued to flourish in Perth and regional areas.
One of Netball WA’s flagship community programs is its Shooting Stars initiative, which is affecting genuine change in the lives of more than 350 indigenous netballers in eight locations in WA.
Another top flight sporting organisation working closely with Healthway, the Western Australian Cricket Association’s state side, Western Warriors, is a key ambassador for the agency’s ‘Alcohol, Think Again’ initiative.
After connecting with Healthway early in the decade, the WACA moved to replace any unhealthy advertising with partners more suitable to push a healthy living message.
Big Bash League side Perth Scorchers is also a big supporter of Variety – the Children’s Charity, which provides help to children who are sick, disadvantaged or have special needs.
Little Athletics WA
As the peak body for the development of athletics in the state, Little Athletics WA is serious about helping young Western Australians achieve their full potential.
Like the WACA, Little Athletics recently realigned its advertising partners, eschewing fast food giant McDonald’s for Healthway’s Go for 2&5 healthy eating program.
Chief executive Vince Del Prete said the partnership with Healthway had allowed Little Athletics to use sport as a vehicle to help illustrate the value of a healthy and active lifestyle.