A who’s who of Indigenous footy stars will be in Broome for a four-day camp beginning today (February 1).
Fifty-five players from clubs around Australia are gathering in the northern West Australian town to bond in player-led cultural development sessions, football training and traditional activities with local communities such as fishing and dancing.
The cultural development sessions will identify and discuss AFL dynamics and club culture and the intersection with Indigenous people’s lives.
AFL general manager for Inclusion and Social Policy, Tanya Hosch, said the camp was a chance for the players to get together in a culturally appropriate setting before the upcoming premiership season.
“We have worked with our players to ensure the camp has a strong cultural focus and celebrates and strengthens their cultural identity,” she said.
“Our game is the number one choice sport for many Indigenous Australians across the country and to see 15 per cent of all players drafted last year identify as Indigenous men shows the strong links between football and Indigenous people.
“We hope all of these footballers continue to enhance their leadership capacity and continue the legacy of great Indigenous footballers who have laid the foundations for their success.”
The camp is being run by the AFL and AFL Players’ Association. They are held twice a year.
AFLPA chief executive Paul Marsh said the camp was a great opportunity to get together players from across the country and across many demographics to explore ways to better maximise their time in the game.
“The camp will provide all Indigenous players the opportunity to not only connect with culture but to further educate the industry about what we can be doing better to support past, present and future Indigenous players,” he said.
“It’s a priority for the AFLPA Indigenous Advisory Board that the AFL industry is working together as a whole to support Indigenous players and their families, from the minute they are drafted and well into retirement.”
The following players will be at the camp:
Brisbane Lions: Allen Christensen, Cedric Cox
Carlton: Jarrod Pickett, Kym LeBois, Liam Jones, Sam Petrevski-Seton
Collingwood: Kayle Kirby, Mitchell McCarthy
Essendon: Jake Long
Fremantle: Bradley Hill, Danyle Pearce, Michael Walters, Stephen Hill
Geelong: Brandan Parfitt, Jamaine Jones, Nakia Cockatoo, Quinton Narkle
Gold Coast Suns: Brandon Matera, Callum Ah Chee, Jack Martin, Jarrod Harbrow, Sean Lemmons, Steven May
Greater Western Sydney: Jeremy Finlayson, Nathan Wilson
Hawthorn: Cyril Rioli, Kieran Lovell, Shaun Burgoyne
Melbourne: Dion Johnstone, Jeffrey Garlett
North Melbourne: Jed Anderson, Jy Simpkin, Lindsay Thomas, Paul Ahern
Port Adelaide: Aidyn Johnson, Brendon Ah Chee, Chad Wingard, Jake Neade, Jarman Impey, Karl Amon, Patrick Ryder, Sam Powell-Pepper
Richmond: Daniel Rioli, Nathan Drummond, Shai Bolton, Shane Edwards, Tyson Stengle
St Kilda: Ben Long, Jade Gresham
West Coast Eagles: Josh Hill, Malcolm Karpany, Lewis Jetta, Francis Watson, Sharrod Wellingham, William Rioli