The Niagara Park Ourimbah Dockers Junior AFL Club has received a free kick amidst another COVID lockdown after taking out the June round of the Greater Bank’s #GreaterCentralCoast program.
Like many junior sporting clubs across the Coast, the Dockers’ finances had been impacted over the past 12 months due to the pandemic, making the community funding win even more important for the Lisarow-based club.
Club Secretary, Kim Hardacre, said the $2000 they will receive through the #GreaterCentralCoast program will go some way towards filling the fundraising hole that was left following last year’s interrupted season.
“In order to make the game affordable for our players and their families the players’ fees are minimal, which means we rely heavily on fundraising to provide a range of essential things for the club like playing and safety equipment and uniforms,” Kim said.
“Our canteen has long been the centre of our fundraising, but that took a hit last year with the season being interrupted. Even when we got back up and running the restrictions that were in place meant that we had very few families and supporters at our games.
“This funding from Greater Bank could not have come at a better time, particularly given another COVID cloud hanging over the region. It will allow us to purchase a new set of goal post pads, which we desperately need, and put some of the money towards an end-of-season presentation for our teams.”
Kim said that an unexpected benefit of being part of June’s community funding program was the way it galvanised the members and their families who rallied together and voted.
“The way we had to operate due to COVID last year meant we were disjointed as a club. This program created so much interest and chat amongst the players and their families and really brought everyone together. It was a great way to generate a renewed level of passion and pride in the club,” Kim said.
“It’s been a wonderful opportunity and even better result for the Dockers. I can’t thank Greater Bank enough for making this possible.”
Kim Hardacre, Niagara Park Ourimbah Dockers Junior AFL Club Secretary
Youth arts company Jopuka Productions and Central Coast Rowing Club both received $500 as the runners-up for June.
Greater Bank’s Central Coast Regional Sales Manager, Josh Swetnam, said COVID-19 had again created a level of uncertainty across the community and is delighted that the community funding program had provided a level of financial support to a dedicated sporting club.
“Struggling due to COVID has been a common theme for many community groups across the Central Coast over the past 12 months so it’s heartening to be able to provide much-needed support to a passionate sporting group like the Niagara Park Ourimbah Dockers,” Josh said.
“It’s also been great to see how the program is benefiting the club and its members, not just financially, but through community connection, which is so important during tough times.”
The nominees for the July round of the #GreateCentralCoast community funding program are Titans Swim Club Toukley, Wyong Catholic Parish and Lifeline Central Coast.
The public can cast their vote online at greater.com.au/greatercentralcoast. Voting closes at 5pm on Wednesday, 28 July 2021.