As most people are aware, sponsorship in sport is critical, and at Sport Northland it is no different.
To run the events, activities and facilities that we do to encourage more Northlanders into play, active recreation and sport, sponsorship is so important.
Quality and enduring corporate sponsors are few and far between, but Sport Northland is fortunate to have a few in this category. Top of that list is ASB, who has now been our leading sponsor since 1992, a phenomenal partnership.
And it is, therefore, fantastic to be able to announce that ASB has committed as a partner to Sport Northland for another two years when the current contract term expires in March 2020.
While previously facility naming rights has been a feature of ASB's sponsorship in Northland, the new agreement will see a full exit from its naming rights of Sport Northland's Kensington facilities – namely the current ASB Leisure Centre, ASB Stadium and ASB Northland Sports House – as well as an end to its sponsorship of the ASB Kerikeri Half Marathon, following this year's event on November 23.
A review by ASB of its sponsorship commitments around the country has highlighted a desire to widen its spread of community investments to regions where it does not currently have a presence, or where its investment is light.
This has meant a tweaking to certain ASB regional partnerships around the country, including the Sport Northland partnership.
With a preference to focus on programmes that have a deeper impact on people within the community, particularly those that focus on young people, ASB will no longer be a sponsor of the Kensington facilities, but will continue on with other long-standing youth initiatives organised by the trust.
As such, ASB will continue as the major naming rights sponsor of the ASB Northland Secondary School Sports Awards, a partnership that is now 28 years strong, beginning when the awards were established way back in 1992.
Similarly, ASB will continue as the naming rights sponsor of the ASB Northland Secondary Schools Sports Events Programme, which runs right across the school year.
This programme of events is overseen by the Northland Secondary Schools Sports Council and delivered by Sport Northland and the 32 sports codes that make up the 80-plus events on the calendar. A number of these code events are offered separately for junior and senior students as girls only, boys only and mixed events.
Over 9000 student participations were recorded from close to 5000 Northland students over the course of the last 12 months in the ASB Northland Secondary Schools Sports Events Programme.
These numbers have been steadily rising on the back of new and exciting events being established which reflect the changing needs and wants of young Northlanders in terms of their active recreation and sport.
Sport Northland is delighted to be able to continue the long-standing association with ASB into the future – a partnership that has literally resulted in thousands of Northlanders becoming active through cost effective participation in events, facilities and initiatives.