Redlands Little Athletics Centre has been given a much-needed funding boost for its upcoming season thanks to a $5000 grant from Coles.
The Little Athletics centre in Cleveland is one of 158 grassroots sports club across Australia to share in $521,000 for sports equipment from the latest round of the Coles Little Athletics Community Fund.
It is the single largest round of grants distributed to Little Athletics centres since the Coles fund was set up two years ago.
It's aimed at supporting athletes who hope to follow in the footsteps of Aussie champions and Coles ambassadors like Sally Pearson and Brandon Starc.
The funding comes amid research from the Australian Sports Foundation in July which estimated that more than 16,000 local sports clubs were at risk of closing due to reduced revenues and increased costs arising from COVID-191.
Redlands Little Athletics' centre manager Rodney Clarke said the grant would help get its athletes and volunteers back on track after a tough year.
"The grant will allow us to upgrade our concrete runway into a resurfaced long jump and triple jump runway that would lower the risk of injury to athletes," Clarke said.
"It will have a huge impact to our centre as the resurfaced runway will increase the flexibility of our weekly club competition to cater to more young athletes."
Coles state general manager Jerry Farrell said Coles backed Queensland's budding athletes and parent volunteers.
"We know it's been a difficult time for everyone involved in community sport," he said.
"We hope these grants will give athletes, families and volunteers a morale boost ahead of the new season.
"Coles is passionate about helping kids lead healthier, happier lives.
"That's why we're delighted to have raised more than $314,000 in Queensland and $1.68 million nationally for local sports clubs through the Coles Little Athletics Community Fund in just two years."
Funds for the grant are raised through the sale of specially marked chiller bags designed by Aussie kids, with 10 per cent of every bag sold directed to the Coles Little Athletics Community Fund.