It is late August, and football clubs of all codes are celebrating the end of another season as they do at this time each year.

And things are not that different at Pittwater RSL Football Club. Trophies are being presented, players are being celebrated and parents are looking forward to a quick breather before Summer sport kicks off.

However, for the second year in a row, the club has also taken the opportunity to use its major end of season function for junior players (U6-U9) as a way of giving back to the world. At the Pittwater Junior Gala Day, held on Sunday at Kitchener Park in Mona Vale, the club partnered with Mona Vale Anglican Church to raise money and awareness for the work of global charity World Vision.

‘This weekend happened to be the World Vision 40 Hour Famine, which many people are already involved in, so it seemed like an obvious link to use the Gala Day as a way of increasing the support our community can give to a great charity like World Vision’ said church representative Matt Elkan.

There was face painting, a cake stall, bbq, a jumping castle, kicking competition and petting zoo. Through these activities, the members of the club and the local community raised over $2000 to go towards improving the lives of people in the world who do not have the freedom and opportunity that kids on the peninsula enjoy.

Local State member, Mr Rob Stokes, addressed the crowd of parents and children with a message of fairness. He noted that while fairness is a big part of what we enjoy about sport, the world is often unfair to people – often children – many of whom live on a tiny fraction of what we spend to look after our children here on the beaches.

In keeping with the theme of the day, all match balls were certified ‘Fair Trade’ balls donated by Mona Vale Anglican Church. They were supplied by local company RREPP, who specialize in ethical sports balls for a range of codes.

Sunday was a perfect sunny warm late Winter’s day, on which it seemed as though Spring had already arrived. Nearly 460 players played in a total of 120 games on 13 fields that were arranged and rearranged from before sunrise until after sunset to suit the different aged teams by the tireless committee of the Pittwater RSLFC. There were two team marches displaying the artistic and organizational talents of parents and players. Girls and boys received trophies for their participation over the season and on the day. The day was a day of celebration of not just ourselves, but of each other, the community and the broader world in which we live. Club committee member and coordinator of the Gala Day, Steve Kiddle, embraced the sentiment of many in his reflection on the success of the day :

It is so wonderful to be part of a community that offers assistance, helps the community, joins in the family spirit and can support charities such as World Vision.’

 

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