Northern NSW Football is delighted to announce the formation of its inaugural Indigenous Reference Group.
The group met for the first time virtually on Thursday night, with the initial meeting a success.
The group is made up of seven highly respected members of the football community including former Matilda Gema Simon, Moree FC’s Darrel Smith and Mick Hugo from South Cardiff FC as well as Casey Manton (Metford Cobras), Casey King (Italo Stars), Kaliela Thornton (Tamworth FC) and Mat Moncreif.
NNSWF Female Participation and Inclusion Officer Annelise Rosnell facilitated the meeting and was thrilled with the positive start for the group.
“It was a really good beginning. We were able to open some initial dialogue on what we want to achieve and how we want to go about it,” Rosnell said.
“We have some amazing people who have joined the group and I know given their knowledge and experience we have the ability to make some real progress in this area.
“Our aim is to work together on Indigenous football activities and how NNSWF can better engage Indigenous communities, players, coaches and referees.
“There is plenty of hard work to do but this was certainly an encouraging start.”
NNSWF’s Indigenous Reference Group will meet at least quarterly but more frequently if needed during the season. Rosnell will report back recommendations to NNSWF, which will be factored into the Member Federation’s decision-making process.
NNSWF have been taking positive steps towards connecting with the region’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander heritage.
The Member Federation launched its inaugural RTC Group Indigenous Round across its Premier Competitions last season in conjunction with National Reconciliation Week.
NNSWF also launched its first RTC Group NNSWF Talented Indigenous Scholarships to provide assistance to eight Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander recipients from the Hunter Region and regional northern NSW across playing, coaching and officiating.
The scholarships will again be available in 2022, with details on how to apply made available soon.