Online version of the 2014-15 Department of Health Annual Report

Outcome 10: Sport and Recreation

Improved opportunities for community participation in sport and recreation, and excellence in high-performance athletes, through initiatives to help protect the integrity of sport, investment in sport infrastructure, coordination of Commonwealth involvement in major sporting events, and research and international cooperation on sport issues

Page last updated: 17 July 2019

Major Achievements

  • Led the Australian Government support for the 2015 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Asian Cup and 2015 International Cricket Council Cricket World Cup (CWC). The Department worked closely with State and Territory Governments, the New Zealand Government (for the CWC), and the organisers of the Asian Cup and CWC, to ensure that very successful events were delivered.
  • Supported the completion of five new and upgraded sport and recreation facilities, with 15 projects currently underway.
  • Provided water safety education materials for young children to 80,000 schools, pre-schools and child care centres across Australia, under the Saving Lives in the Water – Element 2 initiative.
  • Implemented a range of sports integrity measures including revised Australian anti-doping legislation; the scheduling of performance and image enhancing drugs; and a programme of integrity roadshows to support sub-elite athletes and administrators across Australia.


  • Continuing to work on improving sport participation rates, reversing recent trends, particularly in areas of greatest socioeconomic disadvantage.
  • Continuing work with State and Territory Governments, betting operators, betting regulators and sporting organisations on key measures required for the effective implementation of the National Policy on Match-fixing in Sport.
  • The Department continues to respond to issues resulting from allegations of corruption in relation to the 2022 FIFA World Cup bid and is cooperating with enquiries into the management of Australian Government funds.

Looking Ahead

Australia continues to attract major international sporting events. In August 2015, Australia hosted the 2015 International Netball Federation Netball World Cup. Australia has also been announced as the host for the 2017 Rugby League International Federation Rugby League World Cup. For both events the Department will work with Australian Government entities, relevant State Governments and organising bodies to ensure safe and successful events. The Department will also continue to work with the Queensland Government, Gold Coast City Council and organising bodies on the delivery of the 2018 Commonwealth Games.

In 2015-16, the Department will also continue working closely with key stakeholders to develop and deliver initiatives that strengthen Australian sporting organisations’ integrity capabilities.

Programme Contributing to Outcome 10

Division Contributing to Outcome 10

In 2014-15, Outcome 10 was the responsibility of the Office for Sport.

Programme Performance

In 2014-15, the Department worked to achieve this Outcome by managing initiatives under the following programme.

Programme 10.1: Sport and Recreation

Programme 10.1 aims to increase participation in sport and recreation, support the hosting of upcoming major sporting events in Australia, reduce the number of water and snow injuries and deaths in Australia, and protect the integrity of sport.

Increase participation in sport and recreation

In 2014-15, the Department continued to work closely with relevant stakeholders to encourage increased participation in sport and physical activity by all Australians. This included supporting the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) as it implements the Government’s ‘Sporting Schools’ initiative in 2015 to encourage school children to take part in sport-based physical activity. The Department also undertook projects designed to increase the engagement of specific groups such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, women, those from low socio-economic backgrounds, and regional and remote areas. For example, the Department supported the Northern Territory Thunder programme which aims to facilitate active participation in Australian Rules football and netball in the Northern Territory to improve education, employment, training, capacity building, and health and wellbeing outcomes for individuals.

In 2014-15, the Department continued to support the 2014 I Support Women in Sport Awards to increase awareness of women in sport and to recognise the achievements of female athletes.

Qualitative Deliverable: Develop, implement and promote policies and strategies to support participation in sport and physical activity.
2014-15 Reference Point: Input provided to ensure the strategies developed by relevant Australian Government agencies, States and Territories, the Australian Sports Commission and other relevant stakeholders, support increased participation, encompass health and broader whole-of-government objectives.
Result: Met
The Department worked with relevant Australian Government agencies including the Australian Sports Commission and the Australian Sports Foundation on policies and programmes aimed at increasing participation in sport. This included through contributing to the development of the Play.Sport.Australia strategy which is the Australian Sports Commission’s blueprint to drive increased participation.

The Department also engaged closely with States and Territories through the Committee of Australian Sport and Recreation Officials to increase participation under the auspices of the National Sport and Active Recreation Policy Framework.
Qualitative KPI: Input provided towards the development and implementation of key participation initiatives and strategies, including water and snow safety strategies, to meet the Government’s priority objectives.
2014-15 Reference Point: Participation strategies and initiatives reflect whole-of-government and health objectives.
Increased water and snow safety awareness, as reported by water and snow safety organisations.
Result: Met
Throughout 2014-15, the Department continued to support key participation initiatives and strategies, including water and snow safety organisations and projects through the National Recreation and Safety Programme; the Savings Lives in the Water (Element 1 and Element 2) initiative and the Water Safety: Reduce Drownings programme.

The Department also completed a total of five sport and recreation facilities projects in 2014-15 to support increased participation in sport from the grassroots to elite level.

Support upcoming major sporting events

The Department led the delivery of Australian Government commitments to the events and provided support to the organisers of the Asian Cup and 2015 CWC. Assistance by the Department included: providing the interface between Australian Government agencies and event organisers; facilitating policy outcomes and operational support for Australian Government agencies; managing governance arrangements across the Australian Government; and liaising with State Governments and the New Zealand Government (for the CWC) regarding the delivery of the event.

Delivering a safe and secure event was a high priority. The Department worked with the Attorney-General’s Department to determine and implement the national security overlay for both events, coordinating security and intelligence community stakeholders. State police forces had a primary role as did event organisers who, for the first time, participated as key stakeholders to achieve an integrated safety and security environment.

Support to the Asian Cup included $61 million in funding from the Australian Government (50 per cent) and participating jurisdictions (50 per cent). The funding was managed by the Department under a joint funding agreement with relevant States and Territories, the Asian Cup Local Organising Committee and Football Federation Australia.

Over 620,000 fans watched 32 matches across five venues with the AFC President declaring the tournament the best Asian Cup yet. The Asian Cup resonated deeply with Australia’s multicultural communities and provided a suitable environment for the celebration of Australia’s diverse cultural make-up.

A significant achievement for the Australian Government was the introduction of Trans-Tasman Visa arrangements with New Zealand during the CWC. This enhanced visa process meant that spectators with a valid visa could travel easily between Australian and New Zealand to attend matches.

Qualitative Deliverable: Implement strategies and policies to support the hosting of major international sporting events in Australia. Assist other government agencies in measuring success of strategies and policies.
2014-15 Reference Point: Strategies and policies are implemented in consultation with stakeholders, including State and Territory Governments, the New Zealand Government and event organising committees.
Contribute to the Australian Government’s security plan to deliver a safe and secure event environment for athletes and spectators.
Economic, tourism and community impacts of events are measured.
Result: Met
The Department worked closely with organisers, State Governments, Commonwealth agencies and the New Zealand Government to develop strategies and implement arrangements for the safe and secure delivery of the Asian Cup and 2015 CWC. Policies and strategies covered a wide array of activity: customs, immigration, quarantine, and aviation screening at airports; the importation of medical kits; the registration of team medical professionals; intellectual property and rights protection; legacy, trade and tourism; and security. The economic, tourism and community impacts of the Asian Cup were measured by EY Sweeney and for the CWC40 by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Qualitative KPI: Safe and successful delivery of the 2015 AFC Asian Cup and co-delivery of the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup. Well-coordinated preparation for the safe and successful delivery of the 2015 INF Netball World Cup, the RLIF 2017 Rugby League World Cup and the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
2014-15 Reference Point: Safe and secure delivery of both the Asian Cup and the Cricket World Cup.
Post event analysis indicates that trade, tourism, diplomatic and community objectives were achieved.
Result: Met
The Asian Cup exceeded all expectations with attendance figures of over 620,000 (an average of 20,326 per game) with eight sell out matches (including three not involving the Socceroos). The CWC sold over 1 million tickets and had a global reach of more than 1.5 billion people. The events achieved significant outcomes in relation to the economy, trade and the community: the Asian Cup created $128 million in direct expenditure and Football Federation Australia has already seen a 6% increase in club registrations; the CWC injected $1.10 billion into the Australian and New Zealand economies and created 8,320 full-time equivalent jobs across the two nations.

Improve water and snow safety

In 2014-15, the Department continued to support the ongoing operations of the major water and snow safety organisations through the National Recreation Safety Programme.

The Department, in collaboration with Laurie Lawrence Swimming Enterprises, supported the distribution of the Kids Alive water safety DVD and the development of a water safety education curriculum for children under 5, as part of the Saving Lives in the Water – Element 2 programme. The curriculum has been distributed to over 80,000 childcare centres, playgroups, school of the air families and primary schools.

A preliminary evaluation of the programme, undertaken during 2014-15, identified very strong community and stakeholder support for the water safety curriculum. Recipients have indicated they are using the materials when teaching water safety and that the children find them to be engaging, enjoyable and effective for learning water safety messages. A full evaluation of the programme will be undertaken in future years.

In 2014-15, the Department supported the Government’s commitment to reduce drowning around Australia by continuing to work with Surf Life Saving Australia, the Royal Life Saving Society Australia and AUSTSWIM.

In 2015-16, the Department will review the funding arrangements for water and snow safety programmes to ensure that these activities continue to deliver effective outcomes for the Australian community.

Protect the integrity of sport

In 2014-15, the Department provided support to State and Territory Governments, sports and other organisations to address sports integrity issues by:

  • revising Australia’s anti-doping legislation consistent with the global implementation of the 2015 World Anti-Doping Code;
  • working closely with key stakeholders to protect the integrity of the CWC and Asian Cup;
  • developing anti-match-fixing policy templates and educational materials for the seventh Commonwealth Sports Ministers Meeting to assist Commonwealth nations to implement their own sport integrity initiatives, legislative and policy requirements;
  • delivering an integrity roadshow across Australia targeted at the sub-elite sports level, in collaboration with the ASC and the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority, on a range of integrity matters;
  • continuing to convene Australian Sports Integrity Network meetings on a quarterly basis, and working similarly with State and Territory Governments under the umbrella of a Jurisdictional Sports Integrity Network;
  • scheduling by the Therapeutic Goods Administration of a number of Performance and Image Enhancing Drugs on the Standard for the Uniform Scheduling of Medicines and Poisons, as identified in the Australian Crime Commission’s 2013 Organised Crime and Drugs in Sport Report;
  • completing threat and vulnerability assessments for national sporting organisations to assist the protection of sports against integrity risks; and
  • continuing to raise awareness of sports integrity issues through the online anti-match-fixing education programme (accessed by over 6,000 athletes, administrators and support personnel).
Qualitative Deliverable: Provide education and support services on sports integrity for sporting organisations.
2014-15 Reference Point: Initiate and convene regular Australian Sports Integrity Network meetings with sports relevant law enforcement and anti-doping agencies.
Result: Met
Three meetings of the Australian Sports Integrity Network were held. The Network provides a collaborative forum for Government and Australian sporting organisations to discuss and coordinate responses to key sport integrity threats. Australia’s sports integrity efforts has been further strengthened through the establishment of the Jurisdictional Sports Integrity Network.
Qualitative Deliverable: Ensure Australia’s anti-doping legislative framework is consistent with the new World Anti-Doping Code.
2014-15 Reference Point: Review and implement necessary changes to Australia’s anti-doping legislation prior to commencement of the new World Anti-Doping Code on 1 January 2015.
Result: Met
Legislative amendments were passed through Parliament and commenced on 1 January 2015. They gave effect to key changes in the new World Anti-Doping Code including new anti-doping rule violations, a review process for Therapeutic Use Exemption applications, and changes to the statute of limitations.
Qualitative KPI: Successful development and implementation of major events integrity strategies.
2014-15 Reference Point: The major events are conducted without integrity compromise of the competition or individuals involved.
Result: Met
The Asian Cup and the CWC were delivered effectively without match-fixing incidents.
Qualitative KPI: Increase in the capacity of Australian sports and governments to address match-fixing in their jurisdictions.
2014-15 Reference Point: Range of templates, tools and resources provided for use by sports, governments and other relevant organisations to address match-fixing.
Result: Met
Sport integrity products and services were well utilised by industry stakeholders with over 6,000 persons completing the Keep Sport Honest online e-learning programme.

Outcome 10 – Financial Resource Summary

(B) - (A)
Programme 10.1: Sport and Recreation1
Administered expenses
Ordinary annual services (Appropriation Act No. 1)47,79642,981(4,815)
Special accounts
Sport and Recreation Special Account12,16811,912(256)
Departmental expenses
Departmental appropriation213,30812,158(1,150)
Expenses not requiring appropriation in the current year3653812159
Total for Programme 10.173,92567,863(6,062)
Outcome 10 Totals by appropriation type
Administered expenses
Ordinary annual services (Appropriation Act No. 1)47,79642,981(4,815)
Special accounts12,16811,912(256)
Departmental expenses
Departmental appropriation213,30812,158(1,150)
Expenses not requiring appropriation in the current year3653812159
Total expenses for Outcome 1073,92567,863(6,062)
Average staffing level (number) 60 58 (2)
  1. This Programme includes National Partnerships payments to State and Territory Governments by the Treasury as part of the Federal Financial Relations Framework.
  2. Departmental appropriation combines ‘Ordinary annual services (Appropriation Act No. 1)’ and ‘Revenue from independent sources (s74)’.
  3. ‘Expenses not requiring appropriation in the budget year’ is made up of depreciation expense, amortisation, make good expense and audit fees.

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