Call out for the unsung footy heroes of 2020

By SANFL Media

In recognition of the efforts of thousands of volunteers at South Australian footy clubs, SANFL is putting a call out for nominations for the 2020 SANFL Statewide Super Volunteer of the Year Award.

From recovery efforts in bushfire-ravaged communities on Kangaroo Island and the Adelaide Hills, to dealing with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their local footy clubs and leagues, volunteers have taken on the greatest of challenges in 2020.

SANFL Chief Executive Officer Jake Parkinson said that despite the football season being on hold for the past few months, it was fitting that the SANFL Statewide Super Volunteer of the Year Award should go ahead this year.

“We know it’s been one of the toughest years for all the tremendous volunteers involved in footy, which is why it’s more important than ever to celebrate their outstanding efforts, whether that be for their contribution in 2020 or in the past,” Mr Parkinson said.

“We saw volunteers step up in early 2020 to assist their local communities devasted by bushfires and assist with, not just physically rebuilding footy clubs, but helping entire communities get back on their feet.

“Then came COVID-19 and the unimaginable. For the first time since World War 2 the football season was postponed, with volunteers helping navigate their clubs and leagues to find a way through the shutdown period and, more recently, rise to the challenge of return to training in a way that we’ve never experienced before.”

Statewide Super Chief Executive Tony D’Alessandro said football and sporting clubs are a vital part of the social fabric of local communities and this was more evident as a result of the impact of COVID-19.

He said that now more than ever was the ideal opportunity to nominate a worthy candidate from your club for the SANFL Statewide Super Volunteer of the Year Award.

“We’re delighted to be able to team with SANFL in acknowledging all the true local legends who make the game of Australian Rules football great from behind the scenes at grassroots level,” Mr D’Alessandro said.

“Whether they be administrators, coaches, trainers, scoreboard attendants, timekeepers or work in the canteen or BBQ, now is the time to honour the unwavering loyalty of volunteers to your football club or league.”

Entering its fourth year, the SANFL Statewide Super Volunteer of the Year Award has been previously won by Millicent’s Craig Tunkin (2017), Crystal Brook’s Mick Fogarty (2018) and Bridgewater/Callington’s Andrew Frazer (2019).

The 2020 SANFL Statewide Super Volunteer of the Year will be presented in September, with eight shortlisted nominees each receiving the following prizes:

  • Financial planning session thanks to Statewide Super
  • An invitation to attend the awards ceremony with an overnight stay in a luxury Adelaide CBD hotel, including breakfast.
  • Two x Adelaide Oval Football Memberships, including reserved seats to all AFL home games (excluding finals) in season 2021.

The winner will be awarded the David Shipway AM Medal and perpetual trophy and will also receive:

  • A one-night stay for two people at Serafino Winery, McLaren Vale, including three-course dinner and breakfast. During the stay, they will be provided with a new luxury Kia vehicle on a two-day loan to explore the famous wine region in style.

If you know a deserving volunteer at either your SANFL or grassroots community club, or an administrator of a local league, nominate them now at www.sanfl.com.au/volunteer. Nominations close on August 3.