Dear All,

As the reality of COVID-19 continues to unfold, our thoughts are with you, our participants, your families, the football community and the broader community at large.

At Football NSW, your health and wellbeing is our number one priority as we navigate these uncharted waters.

As you are aware, the Federal Government has recently imposed increased restrictions and measures to confront and minimise the spread of COVID-19. As we all should, Football NSW supports these measures and we have, ourselves, begun to take the necessary steps to adapt how we conduct our business, safeguard our staff, and service and support our members as best we can.

For your information, I maintain constant contact with the State Government, its relevant agencies and other State Sporting Organisations who find themselves in a similar situation to ours, I sit on football’s National COVID-19 Working Group, my staff convenes regular teleconferences with our Associations and Clubs, and we regularly liaise with anyone who reaches out for guidance and assistance.

As you know, last week our national governing body, Football Federation Australia (FFA), together with all Member Federations, temporarily suspended all football, including matches, training sessions, courses and all other football related activities until 14 April 2020. Whilst this is a temporary measure and may in time be extended, we continue to work with FFA and your respective Associations/Clubs to ensure the long-term sustainability of our sport so that the game may return to normal as soon as possible.

As the largest participation sport in New South Wales, and indeed Australia, we all have a collective responsibility to take action to help slow the spread of COVID-19. I understand the impact this has on you all, and I appreciate your ongoing cooperation and support. Football is a large ecosystem and we cannot underestimate the importance of the role each of us play within that system and the impact our actions might have on the game as a whole.

While football is temporarily suspended, it is important to continue to support each other during these difficult times. I understand that many of you have registered with your local Club for season 2020 and we are well aware of your love of the game and your desire to return to the pitch as quickly as possible. To ensure we can all continue to enjoy the game we love when football does recommence, we need to keep our Clubs and Associations strong and operating, and they need to know the community has their back.  Our sport as a whole, and our football clubs in particular, have always played a pivotal role in our community, acting as facilitators of health and wellbeing whilst being a cornerstone in the creation of social cohesion.

For your information, I have attached a series of ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ that we have developed, and I am committed to keeping you updated as new information becomes available.

In closing, I would like to thank you all for your patience and continued support. Our game has never before faced such a challenge, however our love of football and sense of community has never been stronger.

Please look after yourselves and your loved ones, stay strong and healthy and please follow all the Government’s guidelines.

Kindest regards

Stuart Hodge

Football NSW Chief Executive