NAIDOC Round Successfully Held

The Subiaco Football Club successfully held their first home NAIDOC Round match since 2013 with positive engagement across the week leading into Saturday’s match between Subiaco and Perth.
With NAIDOC Week celebrating the history, culture and achievements of aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Subiaco showed its own proud aboriginal history. Stretching back to the early 1900’s with aboriginal football pioneer Jimmy Melbourne, Subiaco’s aboriginal rite of passage has continued for over 110 years notably with Alistair Pickett winning a Sandover Medal and becoming a multi premiership player.
As part of NAIDOC Week both the Subiaco Senior and Colts squads got a greater understanding of the aboriginal history that exists within the current squad with current aboriginal players addressing the playing groups in the lead up to Saturday’s NAIDOC Round match.
Prior to Saturday’s Colts match, former club champion Des Headland addressed the Colts playing group speaking with pride of his own heritage at the club and his own achievements which were born out of the positive environment of the Subiaco Football Club. Headland’s influence on the Colts team was most notable with current aboriginal players in Che Wyatt, Kyron Hayden and Duane Smith, who all played crucial roles as the Subiaco colts came from behind in the last quarter to defeat the Perth colts.
In between the reserves and league games, players from both teams as well as spectators heard ‘Welcome to Country’ and were witness to a special on field dance routine by local aboriginal young men from the Subiaco district.
Before all three games across the day, the aboriginal players of both teams were recognised by attending the coin toss and embracing each other before the match. With the aboriginal flag painted on Leederville Oval, this was the ideal backdrop to signify the importance of this very special occasion.
Meanwhile off-field the Subiaco President Function for Saturday’s NAIDOC Round had a strong aboriginal influence. Respected figure Mitchell Garlett performed a traditional ‘Welcome to Country’ followed by local aboriginal young men performing a traditional aboriginal dance. The dance which pays respect to the spirit, the kangaroo and the emu is replicated across Australia and was well received by the function guests.
Subiaco’s involvement and inclusion within the aboriginal community was shown with a video being played highlighting the outstanding work that the club has done at Balga Senior High School in helping use football as a pathway to better life and education outcomes for local aboriginal boys.
Vice principal of Balga Senior High School Mark Carton was a guest at the function and spoke to the room about some of the success stories that he has seen over the past six years since the program has been running. The Subiaco Football Club presented to Mark for Balga Senior High School, one of the special 2017 NAIDOC Round match balls.
Subiaco was also delighted to be the recipient of a stunning piece of aboriginal artwork created by girls at Girrawheen Senior High School. Another local school that has benefited from Subiaco’s aboriginal involvement in the community, Girrawheen has commenced a dedicated girls football program with the artwork donation a sign of gratitude from the school.
Head of the girls football program at Girrawheen, Sam Eaton was on hand to present the piece and give the background to the art which sees the Subiaco logo surrounded by six signs of the Noongar seasons.
The post-match function rounded out the day of NAIDOC celebrations with Adam Cockie a deserving recipient of the match ball for a best on ground performance.
Subiaco Football Club would like to extend thanks to all those who helped contribute to the successful running of NAIDOC Round at Leederville Oval on Saturday, in particular highlighting the support of Len Yarran.

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