As part of the University of Notre Dame’s commitment to serving our community, staff and students rolled up their sleeves and volunteered their time at a recent Clontarf Foundation Football Carnival.
Hosted by the Fremantle Clontarf Academy, the day saw 120 young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men from nine Perth academies participate in the carnival.
While playing footy was what brought everyone together, the real goal of the day was to foster the Clontarf Spirit – have a go, try your best and show good sportsmanship.
“I loved the spirit in which the games were played… seeing the boys help each other up after big tackles and back their team mates,” remarked Anna, First Year Physio student.
The UNDA team of volunteers worked across many aspects of the carnival, including goal umpiring, helping with basic first aid, physio related issues, student engagement and the all-important task of feeding the hungry players.
“It was so rewarding to be able to give back a small bit to such a great cause,” Anna – Notre Dame Student Volunteer.
But the experience goes far deeper than fulfilling a role on the day. The Clontarf Foundation is a national not-for-profit organization which exists to improve the education, discipline, life skills, self-esteem and employment prospects of their members. The partnership between UNDA and Clontarf is designed to foster collaboration and build community through our relationship.
“It was great to have the Notre Dame volunteer staff and students participating and interacting with the Clontarf boys. These interactions play a vital part in opening up the boys eyes to the opportunities that are available to them while also providing opportunities to socialise and interact with members from the community that they otherwise might not,” commented Clontarf Regional Manager, Tony Delaney.
“The Notre Dame volunteers also gave our Clontarf staff a much needed chop out by providing first aid and attending to any minor injuries that happened on the day. Knowing the boys were being attended to by Physio’s in training was very reassuring for our staff and boys alike,” he said.
The UNDA Pathways team set up games for the students who were scheduled on a break from playing in the carnival. This was a great opportunity to engage with the boys, have some fun and break down barriers associated with university.
Volunteering is a way tobuild stronger and more meaningful relationships within our community but it’s also beneficial to the volunteers who as a result broaden their experience, skillset and network.
“It was a great experience. It was lots of fun to be involved at a footy carnival and it was awesome to see how much the kids enjoyed the games! Plus, you get to work with other people from different degrees and year groups which is also great for professional development,” remarked Riley, Second Year Physio student.
The UNDA students were represented from Education, School of Physio and Health Science. Their vibrant attitudes were a wonderful testament to themselves and reflected the university’s commitment to serving its community.