The Krakatoas Sports Club based in Mt Waverly in Victoria wanted a way to bring Indonesians and Australians together through a shared love of sport – in particular Aussie Rules.
They saw the need for an integrated sports team upon discovering 70% of international students face feelings of extreme loneliness while studying at university. They have spent the last three years working with over 4000 Indonesian students by introducing them to the traditional Australian sport of AFL. They are passionate about ensuring the Indonesian community have an opportunity to go beyond the books, desk or mall.
The main barrier for international students participating in sport is the financial costs, as many studets are living out of home and visas may not allow them to work much if at all.
Th Krakatoa’s applied for a grant from the Australian Sports Foundation and Australia Post to ensure all players from all backgrounds can play sport regardless of their financial situations.
“Sport builds strong intercultural ties throughout all diverse communities and it’s uniqueness as an Australian traditional sport makes it the perfect sport to bring Aussies and Indonesians together.”
– Sam Shlansky, Krakatoas Sports Club
The Krakatoas Sports Club provides positive and inclusive sporting experiences to create greater awareness of the value of diversity and inclusion in sport.
The membership base of the Krakatoas sports club is 80% people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Through their Sport4Everyone project they wanted to increase mixed-gender participation and cross cultural understanding.
On field the club focuses on creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all genders and cultures.
With the Sport4Everyone grant the Krakatoa’s were for the first time able to offer a men’s team and a mixed team.
The funding allowed the club to remove or lower fees for all players as they were able to cover the cost of registration, field hire, equipment, coaching and insurance – taking the pressure off the players and knocking down the major barrier to participation.
The news of the ‘all inclusive and welcoming’ fee-free footy club quickly spread around the Mt Waverly Community and soon the teams were full of new faces from Aussie locals to first time players from different countries including Japan and Taiwan.
The Krakatoa’s are hopeful that when the winter football season starts they’ll have more women join and will be able to create a female team and long term want to see more players join from more cultures and backgrounds to further diversify the sport of Aussie Rules. In the future the Krakatoa’s want to see several players play for Aussie Rules clubs in other leagues in Victoria and beyond.