17 March 2016
The dAIS scheme is designed to provide funding to Australia’s best current and emerging athletes, giving them an opportunity to focus on their training and performance. dAIS provides them with the best opportunity to achieve podium level results for Australia at Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth Games.
Australia’s newest boxing star, Shelley Watts burned through her savings as she focused on qualifying, and then competing, at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games last July.
‘I don’t think a lot of people realise that I have put my whole life on hold,’ says Watts. “It means a lot to me,’ says Watts of the dAIS scheme. ‘Being on the government’s radar as someone who is an emerging talent will help me to continue with my training. I want to be able to go toe to toe with the elite girls overseas, who get paid to do what we do.’
This financial year, Shelley’s taxable income is less than $5000. “That's not my tax, that's the income I made!” She laughs, “Without the dAIS funding, I couldn't have survived, let alone trained at the level needed to compete successfully with the international renowned female boxers!”
The costs of being an elite Australian athlete are constantly increasing and Australia’s geographical position means that it costs up to 106% more for an Australian athlete to compete in the world’s best competitions compared to our International rivals.
The funds available however, are not enough to support our emerging athletes and some of Australia’s best athletes are struggling to survive on funds available.
Read more dAIS athlete stories.
or visit for more information about the dAIS athlete grant.