What's On In Community: The Year In Review
The St George Illawarra Dragons support and present programs around three community pillars that reflect the needs within our local community.
Dragons Community has tailored programs and formed partnerships with the NRL and key local organisations in line with each of the pillars:
* Health & Wellbeing
* Education & Skill
* Social Inclusion
Each pillar and program is continually monitored to ensure the best possible outcome for all involved.
Dragons Community is now an integral part of the communities it services.
We have been proactive in providing valuable programs and producing resources which many can benefit from.
Whether it is by direct participation or through media such as educational resources, video conferencing, website, mass media or social media, player involvement in community is paramount to the success of Dragons Community.
Dragons players in particular understand that they are in a unique position whereby they can promote and encourage, either directly or indirectly, the physical, cultural and intellectual welfare of young people in our community.
Two very popular Dragons resources are:
Dragons 2016 Junior League Journal
The St George Illawarra Dragons, with the support of St George Bank and the NRL were able to offer all registered Junior Rugby League participants up to U14, the opportunity to receive a complimentary Little Dragons Membership by selecting St George Illawarra Dragons as their favourite team.
In 2016, we had 2,730 members.
In 2017, we will be offering all players (U6-U13) a Little Dragons membership.
‘The Best You Can Be’ Diary (Primary School)
Additionally, Dragons players also draw from their own lives to provide motivation for all children to be the best they can be in all aspects of life.
A total of 33 schools, 133 classrooms with 3,260 students enjoying the benefits of this program in 2016.
The 2017 diary is currently being promoted to schools.
Back 2 Juniors Program
Now in its second year the program once again proved very successful.
The entire NRL squad, NYC players, Dragons staff and NRL Development Officers joined forces to conduct 30 junior club visits across the Dragons catchment simultaneously on two big days:
* June 28 (12 clubs)
* July 21 (13 clubs)
The remaining 11 clubs (majority down the South Coast) were seen around these two key dates.
Game Day Challenge
This initiative involves over 495 local juniors across 33 under 10 teams.
The Challenge provided these Junior League players the opportunity to play at all 12 Dragons home games: WIN Stadium, UOW Jubilee Oval, ANZ Stadium, Allianz Stadium and the Sydney Cricket Ground.
This season also so the return of the Junior League Relay with 18 Clubs and 108 players taking part in a great spectacle at half time of the Dragons vs Broncos game at WIN Stadium.
Eight St George District clubs showed their colours at the Dragons v Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks match at UOW Jubilee Oval.
Disability Support - Score Dragons
Dragons Community, the Illawarra/South Coast junior league and the Disability Trust partnered in 2014 to create a new all-inclusive program for people with disabilities to be a part of the local Illawarra Junior Rugby League competition.
The program thrived in 2015 and recognition given by being awarded the NRL Program of the Year.
Dragons Community / NRL Development Team
The Dragons work very closely with NRLD and have a very strong team which is highly regarded in our communities.
Paul Everill (Manager – Dragons Community)
Adam Bezzina (Dragons Community Officer)
Dan Hunt (Dragons Community Ambassador)
Maria Arthur (Manager, NRL Development, Sydney Metro)
Adam Vanzanten (Manager, NRL Development, Southern NSW)
Pamela Goodridge and Huw Ellis (NRL Development Officers – St George)
Jonathan Dallas and Luke Potter (NRL Development Officers – Illawarra)
Matt O’Brien and Tim Del Guzzo (NRL Development Officers – South Coast)
Dragons Community Female Ambassadors
We are very fortunate to have five female ambassadors: Kezie Apps, Emma McKeon (Swimming), Grace Stewart (Hockey), Steph Magiros (Snowboarding) and Josie Talbot (Cycling).