James Sutherland visits Red Centre and announces Clontarf extension
September 12, 2017
On the back of an unprecedented National Play Cricket Week tour involving Cricket Australia CEO, James Sutherland, the national body has today confirmed an extension of its partnership with the Clontarf Foundation, to help improve the well-being of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men around the country.
The latest Cricket Australia census reveals that participation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander players almost doubled in 2016-17 to 54,346, a whopping 47.3% yearly growth.
The Cricket Australia and the Clontarf Foundation partnership has been in existence since 2014. Over the past three years the partnership has exposed many Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander male students to the game of cricket through training sessions and inter and intra cricket carnivals
Cricket Australia CEO, James Sutherland announced the partnership extension whilst he was in Alice Springs, playing cricket with young Aboriginal boys from the region and said the work with the Clontarf Foundation was an important step in cricket’s efforts to drive Indigenous participation in cricket and help drive social change.
“We’re delighted that the growth of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation in cricket has been so strong in the past couple of years, and we’re very proud to continue our partnership with Clontarf,” said Mr. Sutherland.
“It’s wonderful to see the great work Clontarf is doing with these young boys all around Australia, and it is a privilege to be able to meet some of the students during my Northern Territory visit.
“We really want them to aspire to playing cricket at the highest levels. There are already 60 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander players who are currently playing First Grade Premier Cricket around the nation.”
The next iteration and progression of the Clontarf partnership will have two key objectives:
1. Engage all Clontarf staff and students with the game of cricket;
2. Inspire participation in Primary Schools and enhance student employment prospects.
Over the past three years, CA has invested funds to support the introduction of a cricket program into the Clontarf Foundation’s curriculum that uses sport to improve the education, life skills, self-esteem and employment prospects of young Indigenous Australians.
Clontarf Chairman Ross Kelly said:
“The Clontarf Foundation is delighted to continue its partnership with Cricket Australia. We appreciate the support not only in Cricket but also in the development of Indigenous young men.”
The cricket program has been introduced into all of Clontarf Foundation’s academies, which cater for more than 6,000 students across Western Australia, Northern Territory, Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales.
The partnership is a key element of CA’s National Indigenous Strategy addressing the challenge of increasing cricket participation in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities with an aspiration to increase the number of Indigenous cricketers earning State and national representation.
Cricket Australia also partners with The Stars Foundation to further support and grow female indigenous cricketers.