It’s fair to say that not too many wins have come the Docker’s way of late, but last night was a win of new proportions. Fremantle Dockers players doubled-down on their commitment to support young people in the Fremantle/Cockburn community last night with the launch of their Beyond the Game project at Fremantle PCYC.
Fremantle players will donate their personal time ongoing to helping out with the Night Hoops youth engagement program at the Fremantle PCYC which has been providing a positive space for young people in the community for more than 40 years. In particular, youths who attend the successful Safe Space program eagerly took part as their favourite players took to the courts.
Fremantle players spent the afternoon playing basketball, taking part in team-building exercises, a sumo-suit activity and even cooking sausages for around 60 local kids aged 10-18.
The project follows the players creating their own charitable fund called Fremantle Players Community Giving this year and donating $5,000 of their own money to Night Hoops and Fremantle PCYC Safe Space earlier this year. The players set up the fund with the help of the Fremantle Foundation, a community philanthropic organisation.
Nat Fyfe spent time chatting to his biggest fans amongst shooting hoops, while Aaron Sandilands, newly assigned ruckman, manned the snags. Players showed their football skills were easily adaptable to the court with some high jumps, but fortunately, the rings were able to withstand their tall orders.
Fremantle player Tommy Sheridan said the Fremantle Players Community Giving was all about finding ways to leverage community benefit out of the unique opportunity professional athletes have to reach young people. “We are in a really lucky position to be able to do what we love as a profession,” Sheridan said. “And we want to use that platform to share the message that even luck comes on the back of a lot of hard work and sacrifice, and help young people be the very best version of themselves that they can be.”
Night Hoops board member Griffin Longley said the initiative of the Fremantle players was an inspiring example of communities working together to support and mentor young people in need.
“Creating an inclusive and connected community is everyone’s business, and I think we can all take a lead from what these young football players are doing.”
Fremantle PCYC Centre Manager Julie Gorman said the organisation was proud to be hosting the project launch. “Projects like this show, yet again, how important youth engagement opportunities are to building stronger, more connected communities.
“Whether a youth is at risk or simply wanting to develop leadership and their potential, PCYC’s inclusive approach is resulting in tangible outcomes for the wider Fremantle community.”
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