We are currently a multi-club Centre comprising six clubs (Glen Dhu, Norwood, Sacred Heart, Summervale, St Leonards, and Youngtown). There has been discussion in recent years about the merits of moving from a multi-club Centre to a single one-club Centre. We understand that of the 19 Little Athletics Centres in Tasmania, there are only 2 that still operate as a multi-club Centre, and the remaining 17 operate under the one-club model. The SLLAC Executive Board believe there is broad support for changing to a one-club Centre, and at the recent August SLLAC Board meeting, there was unanimous agreement to commence a consultation process with all members of the SLLAC community.
We believe some of the benefits will be:
- Consolidation of resources
- People: Rather than having 7 committees (SLLAC and 6 clubs), we could have one committee which brings together the skills and talents of the many people in our SLLAC community. This year at the SLLAC AGM, only 2 of the 5 executive positions could be filled, and many clubs had difficulty filling their essential roles.
- Physical: All the club assets would be accessible and shared for all members.
- Financial: Club funds would be consolidated which would provide a very healthy future for our Centre and sport which can invest in state of the art technology. For example, we would like to move to an online recording system with tablet devices on site, removing the duplication of data entry, and parents will be able to access results in real-time.
- The load will be shared more evenly. Currently, it is pro-rata, which creates pressures on individual clubs to fulfil obligations.
- Currently, new athletes are allocated a club based on zoning according to their child’s school. This can create issues and would be removed.
- Essentially, athletics is an individual sport (other than relays) and not team-based.
- A more inclusive environment would be created. No ‘them’ and ‘us’. It would be just ‘us’ together as one club.
- No requirement to sit in allocated spaces during meets. Friendship groups can sit together and freely mix.
- Uniforms: These would be streamlined with one uniform. We would have the bulk purchasing power rather than clubs having to meet minimum order requirements. Perhaps we could have a competition to design our new SLLAC uniform. Perhaps even a mascot!
- Our new Age group manager system would work extremely well, as this is no longer club based.
- No longer would events be overrepresented by the larger clubs.
- Clubs concerned about future viability with low membership and/or finances would no longer need to worry.
- Training can be Centre-based on multiple days, rather than Club-based on a specific day.
For many people, the realisation that change is needed came at the State Relay Championships – when our athletes can compete together, with their peers, in the one uniform, and there is a real sense of belonging and camaraderie.
We understand there will be some issues that need to be worked through; however, we are committed to being open, transparent and consultative. Some initial thoughts could be:
- Club traditions could be honoured by introducing perpetual trophies for those that represent the ideals and values of Little Athletics.
- An opportunity to revise the award structure. Rather than club awards, we could have age group awards. Age group managers and teams will know these athletes well and will have valuable input.
- An opportunity to celebrate everyone’s season and better present our prestigious awards. Perhaps a Celebration Day at the conclusion of the Centre Championships – for example, all families would be invited to a relaxed picnic-style presentation event to celebrate the “family and fun” elements of Little Athletics, rather than trying to rush through award presentations at 8.15am before a championship meet.
- We will need to have a transition period from old club uniforms to a new Centre Uniform. The Centre may be able to provide new tops to all athletes in the inaugural year.
If approved, these changes are planned to be effective from the 2022/2023 season.
While there will undoubtedly be some issues raised as we consider a new structure, we believe this change will bring many improvements to our centre as outlined above and address many of the concerns raised over many years.
All members had the opportunity to provide feedback to the SLLAC Board. We want to ensure that this transition is completed as smoothly as possible.
Notice of Special General Meeting
Dear Members of the South Launceston Little Athletics Centre,
After extensive consultation with our membership earlier in the year, and an subsequent overwhelming majority support vote from Clubs at a Board meeting, we are proceeding to a formal vote of members to wind up the affiliated clubs so all athletes can participate as athletes of South Launceston Little Athletics Centre.
Notice is hereby given that a Special General Meeting of the South Launceston Little Athletics Centre Inc. will be held at:
- Date: Saturday, January 8, 2022
- Time: 12noon
- Venue: Northern Athletics Centre, St Leonards Rd, St Leonards.
Special Resolutions to be voted on are:
- That all references to “clubs” within the South Launceston Little Athletics Centre Inc. Rules of Association and By-Laws be removed, to reflect the winding-up of all six clubs. The proposed changes can be found here:
- Rules of Association
- That any funds from the affiliated clubs that remain after the payment of all debts and liabilities shall be transferred to the South Launceston Little Athletics Centre Inc.
- That the new centre structure will come into effect at the 2022 AGM, to be held at a date to be confirmed in May 2022.
Should you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
18 December 2021