Grants offer reprieve for struggling community clubs
FEDERAL coronavirus relief has been welcomed by the Warwick sporting community but a cloud of uncertainty remains over whether it will be enough to offset ongoing financial burden.
Warwick Boxing Club was among those organisations to be rewarded a $2000 grant this week under the Morrison government’s COVID Safe Active Clubs Kickstart Grant.
The money will go towards subsiding the cost of hygiene precautions such as sanitiser.
President Mick Gaffney said he was unsure how long the money could cover additional costs.
“At the moment, we’re sanitising after every session and sometimes in sessions,” he said.
“If this becomes an ongoing type of thing — I don’t know how far the $2000 will go.
“Any money from government is good money but if it continues and the costs are still there, we may need a top-up.”
Gaffney’s concerns come on the back of grave fears for the future of community sporting clubs.
While the boxing club had suffered financial setbacks in offering members a discount for time in lockdown, Gaffney said it was minor compared to other codes or gyms.
“I can guarantee coronavirus has hurt a lot of them,” he said.
“Other clubs I know are struggling because even fundraising events, like a pub raffle, they aren’t able to have because of coronavirus.
“It’s just an added cost on top of everything else.”
After being reopened for three weeks now, Gaffney did note improved hygiene had positives.
“It’s been a wake up call for everybody and helped us step up the mark up a little bit,” he said.
“Our club has gone through the storm of coronavirus and it’s cost us money but now we’re on the new half of the year and we have old and new members coming in, and they’re all helping us out.”