Newsletter - January 2012
Happy New Year! January 2012 has got off to a flying start with the NSA School Holiday Program expanded this month to include fifteen towns within Nyoongar Country! The program, led by NSA‟s Sports Development Officers, travelled to towns in the Wheatbelt, South West and Great Southern regions.
The program was a great success and despite the roaring heat, was greeted with a total of 455 participants across the nine days, with 419 (92%) of these children being of Aboriginal descent. NSA‟s Sports Development Officers Mark, Dylan, Chris, Zach, Jayden and Jordy conducted the program. Children involved in the program had the opportunity to play many sports including basketball, football, soccer and hockey. The program is a chance for kids to learn more about sport, physical activity, team work, leadership and healthy lifestyles.
NSA is currently undergoing several staff changes and is saddened to see the departure of Senior Sports Development Officer, Mark Griffin and Sports Development Officer, Kelly Headland. The Nyoongar Sports Association thanks Mark and Kelly for their tireless work and enthusiasm; and wishes them all the best in the future. Whilst we are sad to see members of the team leave, we are all heartened by the new skills, experience and knowledge that departing staff have, as a result of the resources that NSA invested in them. Good luck guys and we are very excited to soon welcome new members to the team!
As part of the Wheatbelt school holiday program, the team went out to the towns Moora, Northam, Kondinin, Merredin, Kellerberrin and Narrogin. Mark and Chris were greeted by a total of 209 participants across the nine days of the program, with 200 (96%) of these participants from Aboriginal descent.
This was the most successful Wheatbelt program as yet, with such a large turnout. The program was Sports Development Officer Chris Warrell‟s first experience on a NSA school holiday program, one which he greatly enjoyed, “It was a success”. A member of the Redbacks Perth Basketball Association named Jared travelled to several of the towns with the NSA team and Chris believes “getting the Redbacks down was a success, the kids enjoyed having them down.”
Sports Development Officers Dylan and Jayden travelled to the South West region conducting the school holiday program in towns Pinjarra, Collie and Bunbury. With a total of 126 participants across the eight day program, 100% of these participants were of Aboriginal descent. The team experienced very high temperatures and enjoyed concluding sport sessions with a much appreciated „water bomb fight‟!
Jayden and Dylan were grateful to the parents and community members who provided assistance and support, “having lunches taken care of is a massive load off our shoulders and parents were really helpful and encouraging, with food and getting kids involved”.
Held across six days in Mount Barker, Tambellup, Katanning, Gnowangerup and Kojonup the NSA team had 120 children participating in the program, of which 93 (78%) were of Aboriginal descent.
Zach and Jayden joined NSA‟s Great Southern Sports Development Officer Mark Jordan to give the children an opportunity to actively engage in sporting activities, learn new skills and further understand the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. In Katanning, the team were thrilled to learn a new sport named „RipperBall‟ which is essentially a game of basketball played on „RipStiks‟. Jayden Resuggan enjoyed the sport and was excited to see the way the kids interacted with the game, “Even the kids who weren‟t necessarily athletic all got a shot. It‟s fantastic because it gets everyone involved.”
Partners and Sponsors
NSA‟s philosophy is to work in partnership and the school holiday program would simply not be possible without the generosity and support of NSA‟s many sponsors and partners. The January school holiday program was supported by a total of 18 partners.
The local governments that support the team and its program include the Shires of Goomalling, Merredin, Moora, Katanning, Kellerberrin, Plantagenet, Kondinin, Northam, Gnowangerup and Broomehill Tambellup.
The Aboriginal organisations in particular, who partnered with NSA, were the Goomburrup Aboriginal Corporation and the Ngalang Boodja Council. Community agencies include Community Art Network Western Australia (CAN WA) and Avon Youth.
NSA also thanks partnering sporting association the Redbacks Perth Basketball Association and commercial sponsors Lottery West and Goomalling IGA. Of course these sponsors include NSA‟s main funding body, the Indigenous Sport and Recreation Program. NSA also received two grants from the Department of Sports and Recreation (DSR) for the South West and Wheatbelt programs and DSR also funds the Great Southern program.