Grassroots sport is again the major beneficiary of Greater Bank’s #GreaterIllawarra community funding program with Port Kembla Junior Rugby League Club taking out the June round.
The club won the recent public vote to pick up $2000, while runners-up, Ability Artists and Arcadians Theatre Group, each received $500.
Based at Noel Mulligan Oval at Warrawong, the Port Kembla club has seen tremendous growth over the last year, doubling in size to now boast 300 junior players across 21 girls’ and boys’ teams from U6 to U16.
Club Secretary, Allison Nutland, said the club was extremely proud of the way it continued to operate under difficult circumstances over the past 12 months, and believes that providing opportunities for kids to play when the competition resumed last year has been the catalyst for the growth.
“The additional processes and procedures we had to implement due to COVID were challenging but it was important that we embrace the change and give our kids every opportunity to get back on the field,” Allison said.
“Taking that position last year has no doubt attracted more players to the club in 2021, particularly in the younger age groups. The growth has been fantastic, but it does create a level of financial pressure to continue to provide the best facilities we can for all of our teams.
“This funding from Greater Bank is a big boost for the club and will allow us to immediately purchase new training equipment, such as tackling bags and agility poles, which will benefit all players in the club.
Allison Nutland, Port Kembla Junior Rugby League Football Club Secretary
“We’re crossing our fingers hoping that the current restrictions will ease soon and we can get the players back on the training field and make the most of the new equipment.”
Greater Bank’s Illawarra Regional Sales Manager, Greg Creagan, said that grassroots and community sport had been a real winner from the #GreaterIllawarra program this year.
“Of the $18,000 the #GreaterIllawarra program has distributed already this year, nearly half of that has gone to supporting community sporting groups,” Greg said.
“These clubs play such an important role in supporting the physical development and wellbeing of people right across our community and during what has been a difficult time to fundraise, it is fantastic that we can play a small role in supporting their operations.”
The July round of the #GreaterIllawarra program is now open with Bikers 4 Heroes, SCARF Refugee Support and Youth: Dismissed - Art Exhibition all vying for a share in the $3000 funding.
The public can cast their vote online at greater.com.au/greaterillawarra or by visiting a Greater Bank branch. Voting closes at 5pm on Wednesday 28 July 2021.