The popularity of Bunbury’s pilot SilverSport program, which allows eligible seniors to access funding that can go towards fees for eligible sport and recreation activities, has resulted in more than $95,000 in funding being distributed to almost 620 recipients.
Eligible seniors can still access funding through the program with around $45,000 available. To be eligible, applicants need to live in the City of Bunbury, be aged 60 years or over and have a valid health care card or pensioner concession card.
The State Government’s SilverSport program provides up to $200 to help seniors to stay active in their community. It helps eligible seniors, who might not otherwise be able to join a sport or recreation club, to keep fit, healthy, active and socially connected using sport and recreation centres, seniors' fitness classes and clubs.
Activities can include, for example, masters swimming, bowls, group fitness classes, walking groups, gym memberships, yoga, Pilates and more.
City of Bunbury Co-ordinator Club and Group Services Gary Thompson said 23 per cent of seniors who received funding have not been involved in a club, program or group in the past 12 months.
“This figure shows that SilverSport is not only keeping seniors active, but also providing a way for people to get back into structured activity,” Mr Thompson said.
“The most popular activity seniors have used the funding for has been gyms, which is reflected in the fact that 30 per cent of recipients have put it towards membership at South West Sports Centre.”
Bowls and golf round out the top three activities while Bunbury Bowling Club and Bunbury Senior Citizens Centre are other popular organisations the recipients have put their funding towards.
The average age of recipients in Bunbury is 72 and 57 per cent are female.
SilverSport applications can be made by visiting www.bunbury.wa.gov.au and searching for “SilverSport”, or collecting an application form from the South West Sports Centre, City’s administration centre at 4 Stephen Street, Bunbury Library or Withers Library.
Eligible clubs and businesses are encouraged to register as a SilverSport provider by downloading and completing the form at the same website address.
More information is available from the City of Bunbury website, Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries website at http://www.dsr.wa.gov.au/funding/individuals/silversport or by calling 9795 2255.