Families fact sheet

This fact sheet provides some background information and suggestions to support clubs and activity providers to successfully reach families and promote a healthy lifestyle across generations.

The involvement of friends and family helps facilitate participation in sport.

How to reach families

  • Women tend to be major decision makers in sport and recreation choices for children and value safe and appropriate opportunities.
  • Families are often looking for opportunities to participate together, have fun and meet people.
  • Families are attracted to messages that are factual, catchy and attractive to both parents and children.
  • A connection through schools provides a good connection to families especially those where English is not their first language.
  • Families may prefer to receive a combination of written material, face-to-face contact, and use of social media to reach all levels within a family unit.

Key motivating factors for participation

  • affordable, low cost and free activities
  • families care about skill development, likely enjoyment, timing schedules, location of activities and getting value for money
  • activities where there are social and educational benefits for children in participating
  • inviting and welcoming places and programs that all of the family are able to enjoy
  • fun activities close to school and home
  • scheduling of activities at suitable times i.e. after school / weekends / school holidays
  • availability of childcare at leisure centres
  • suitable areas for play, and
  • open spaces and pathways that are accessible to prams and children’s bikes.

Families profile

63 per cent of Moreland households are families*. 43.4 per cent of the families in Moreland are couples with a child or children and 15.2 per cent are one-parent families.

*Families are defined as two or more people, one of whom is at least 15 years of age, who are related by blood, marriage (registered or de facto), adoption, step or fostering, and who are usually resident n the same household.  A family may be a couple, a single parent-child, a couple with numerous children, older adults related by blood or adoption living in the same house.

  • More than 30 per cent of Moreland residents are renting which is higher than the Melbourne average of 26.5 per cent
  • 41.3 per cent of households only have one car, 27.7 per cent have two cars and 14 per cent not having a car at all
  • Hlaf of Moreland’s population is in the lower half of income groups, with 26.4 per cent earning between ($0 - $32,489) and 23.6 per cent earning between ($32,500 - $63,076).
 “Knowing the barriers helps you to think ahead when planning and recruiting”

Likely barriers faced by families

There are a number of likely participation barriers faced by families. Whilst barriers vary for different people, some common barriers reported are:

  • time constraints
  • competing priorities of different family members
  • affordability and money constraints
  • lack of facilities and services that support family activity
  • education and employment is often perceived as a higher priority than sport and recreation
  • gender and familial roles sometimes related to cultural expectations
  • lack of interest of some members of the family to be involved
  • low perceptions of safety
  • lack of transport
  • work commitments, and
  • lack of access to information and promotion of family friendly activities.

While families may experience barriers, it is important to understand that when different demographic influences collide that severe disadvantage is likely to be experienced.

For instance, a single parent family, with low to no income, and with limited education etc. then they are likely to experience greater barriers to participation.

What you can do

  • create a connection through schools 
  • provide activities with a focus on skill development, likely enjoyment, family friendly timing and locations
  • provision of suitable information and training sessions regarding physical activity programs
  • provision of free or low cost activities
  • promote the health and wellbeing benefits: ‘improve your physical fitness’, socialise with others parents’ i.e. young mothers.  ‘Meet people and make new friends’
  • provide a range of levels available from beginner to advanced
  • provide culturally relevant family activities
  • offer new experience in safe and welcoming environments
  • use schools, kindergartens, childcare, child and maternal health centres and family support agencies as a way of communicating with families
  • ‘child friendly’ – mum and bubs activity, playgroup in the park
  • organise intergenerational activities and events
  • offer new experiences in safe and welcoming environments
  • family orientated events and festivals that encourage physical activity
  • offer club discount opportunities, i.e. family friendly pricing


Families fact sheet (PDF 563Kb)