Acting High Commissioner, Alison Duncan has presented a cheque for SBD55,550 to the West Makira Constituency Development Office, to commence a sports development program for remote communities in Arosi and Hanunu, West Makira.

The program, focusing on soccer and netball, aims to develop the sporting capacity of these communities through the training of sports administrators and teachers from 3 community high schools and 12 primary schools in the area.

Skills developed through training and coaching workshops will be put to the test through an Annual Sporting League. The top teams from the competition will qualify for the West Makira Games which will be held in December.

Constituency Development Officer Paul Marita thanked the Australian High Commission for the generous support of the Australian Sporting Commission.

"This funding is a huge boost for West Makira. This project will allow people, especially youths, to be occupied naturally and socially in sports. More than 10,000 people in West Makira will directly benefit from this project" he said.

Acting Australian High Commissioner said "we are very pleased to support the West Makira Constituency in implementing a sporting program, to provide opportunities for rural communities, and especially youth, to get involved in health activities".

West Makira Constituency was one of three successful Solomon Islands' projects to receive funding under the Australian Sports Outreach Program 2008-2009.

This year, the Australian High Commission received more than 60 applications for funding under the ASOP program. The successful projects focused on increasing community participation in sports, especially in remote areas. None of the successful applicants had previously received funding from the Australian Sports Commission.

Press Release (Australian High Commission, Solomon Islands)