In a new initiative, AFL New Zealand has recently teamed up with three Regional Sporting Organisations (North Harbour Hockey, North Harbour Volleyball and Skate) to lead a new KiwiSport project within the North Harbour region. The four sports determined the need for a significant focus on female participation and holiday programme components.
With the support of Harbour Sport and KiwiSport, the 4×4 Project has had AFL delivered to over 2200 Intermediate School students in the region.
The Schools involved with the 4×4 project are:
- Orewa College
- Takapuna Normal Intermediate School
- Murrays Bay Intermediate
- Northcross Intermediate
During week 1 of the Term 3 School Holidays, students from all over the North Shore flocked to the Harbour Hockey facility in Albany for a two day Multi Sport Holiday Programme.
The two day holiday programme involving AFL New Zealand, Harbour Hockey, Harbour Volleyball and OnBoard Skate in collaboration with Harbour Sport and was a major component of a KiwiSport project
With an increased focus on female participation, the holiday programme component was designed to provide an opportunity for students to try new and different sports.
A number of benefits can be derived from the cross referenceable skills;
- Improving fundamental skills- Kick, Catch, Pass, Jump, Strike
- Health – Increasing physical activity
- Confidence – Improving skills helps keep kids more active
- Environment – Having the opportunity to try new sports and learn new skills in a comfortable environment (within the school grounds)
- Social – Chance to meet new friends
With the project almost complete, AFL New Zealand will be holding an AFL KiwiKick Tournament at Murrays Bay Intermediate in Term 1 of 2018 to wrap up its completion. 150 students will be involved with each receiving a benefit pack including their own football to promote continued participation as the sport works hard to provide an affinity with the game.
Recent broadcast coverage of AFL on the Duke Channel, has been available to the public on Freeview and TVNZ on demand at no cost and this is has had a significant impact on providing the students with an ongoing interest.
AFL New Zealand continues to promote further opportunities to Intermediate Students outside of school time with the Regional Youth Competition, held at QBE Stadium from October to December each year.