Calling for Coromandel Peninsula nominations – 2023 Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Awards
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Calling for Coromandel Peninsula nominations – 2023 Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Awards

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man smiling holding award in air

The Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Awards are open for the fourth year; celebrating, recognising and acknowledging play, active recreation and sport organisations, initiatives and people in the Waikato region. Nominations are open and are encouraged from Coromandel Peninsula individuals and organisations.


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Recognising those who go above and beyond

The 2023 Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Awards encourage nominations from those in the community who go above and beyond to deliver programmes and initiatives that meet the needs of the participant and create a more active region. Alongside the initiatives are Community Coach and Community Unsung Hero categories which always attract a large number of quality nominations.

2022 saw a record number of nominations and some outstanding initiatives, coaches and volunteers from around the region. The level of initiatives focused on quality experiences that are growing participation is absolutely incredible.

- Matthew Cooper, CEO of Sport Waikato

Sport Waikato are amazed by all those creating initiatives that are aimed at participation – last year there were community programmes supporting young people to be more active, stories of change from the traditional sporting models, programmes aimed at diversity and inclusion and wonderful stories from schools doing things differently to keep tamariki active in a way that’s positive and fun. Along with the quality of community coaches providing great experiences and the wonderful volunteers who are the backbone of sport and active recreation in the region.

Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Award Categories

This year includes a new category - Outstanding By Youth For Youth Initiative for those young people leading or co-designing opportunities. The 2023 categories are:

  • Community Connection Award: Celebrating those individuals or organisations that have created physical activity initiatives that respond to the needs of the community and its participants. This award is designed to recognise those who are working hard to understand their communities and tailor their offerings to help break down barriers to participation, putting participant experience at the heart of decision-making, and using physical activity to create connection in the community to bring people together.
  • Sport & Active Recreation Partnership Award: Celebrating collaboration and the coming together of key organisations to leverage outcomes for the betterment of play, active recreation and sport opportunities and experiences. This award is for councils, community, sport or recreation organisations, iwi, schools or any other organisations who have partnered with others to provide sport and active recreation opportunities to their communities.
  • Outstanding Active Space Initiative: The innovative use of spaces such as community halls, parks, gullies, rivers, skateparks - wherever a space has been used to help people be active! This can be those that have developed the space, or those that run initiatives or programmes using the space.
  • Commitment to Accessibility and Inclusion: Programmes or initiatives that are making physical activity opportunities accessible, welcoming and inclusive to meet the needs of marginalised groups, women/girls, ethnic minority groups, or cultural/religious groups to enable those people to be more active.
  • Community Unsung Hero: We’re looking for those people in your community that help make play, active recreation and sport happen – those who have given their time during the nomination period to provide opportunities, create change and support participation in a volunteer capacity. Maybe they’ve been instrumental in increasing numbers at your club, provided their expertise at the governance table to support the organisation’s direction, they might have lead initiatives, or provided their professional services at no cost to help something great happen. 
  • Community Coach: Nominate a community coach who demonstrates commitment to meeting the needs of the people they coach, for their ability to create positive team culture, provide participation and development opportunities for all players, and promote the spirit of the game - encouraging fair play and commitment to Balance is Better/Good Sports principles over winning.
  • Commitment to Youth Engagement: Nominate an individual or initiative that supports youth participation in physical activity to grow the number of children and young people engaging in play, active recreation or sport, and reverse participation drop-off. Initiatives may be in the areas of play, active recreation or sport and can be targeted at any age group from early childhood through to young adults (age range 0-24).
  • Outstanding By Youth For Youth Initiative: Initiatives or programmes predominantly run by youth for the benefit of young people. These can be initiatives co-designed alongside adults but that are lead by young people 24 years and under.

How to Enter 

Nominations for the 2023 Waikato Sport & Active Recreation Awards can be made on the WSARA website before 5pm, Friday 29th September 2023.

Previous winners from the Coromandel Peninsula – Award Winners in 2022

In 2022, Sean Reilly (pictured above) of the Whitianga Skate School was the winner of the Community Connection award. He won the award for developing a programme that created connections and a great experience for the Skate School participants.

Also from the Coromandel Peninsula were Ride Coromandel Bike Park winning an award for 'Outstanding Active Space Initiative' and Janet Mischewski winning a Community Coach award.

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