After last week's community visits to Illawarra and South Coast regions, the St George Illawarra Dragons on Tuesday, February 21 will turn their attention to St George junior rugby league teams.
The 'Back 2 Juniors' visits – as part of the NRL Community Carnival – will see the Dragons head to eight local St George junior rugby league clubs to deliver the NRL Respect program.
St George Illawarra Dragons players and staff will be joined by NRL Game Development Officers to present the program to local junior players, with lessons including interactive activities, together with educational resources.
The Dragons will take part in local junior rugby league clinics, as well as participate in education lessons with students, focusing on the importance of respect, belonging and celebrating differences both on and off the field.
The NRL Respect program is linked to the Australia and New Zealand curriculum. Every school will receive an interactive presentation, which is supported by a six-week teaching resource focusing on respect, belonging and celebrating differences.
"I'm really excited to get back to my junior club and try to inspire the future generations who are playing football in the St George area," Renown United junior Jacob Host said.
"The area is one that I'm very fond of having played and trained there throughout my rugby league career."
Dragons Community Manager Paul Everill believes the 'Back 2 Juniors' visit is a big boost for rugby league fans in the St George area.
"It is a great opportunity for us to visit other parts of our region and being the pre-season we have the ability to take our full squad out into these areas and it is something the players really enjoy," Everill said.
"It is a great opportunity for the players and fans to interact and for us to promote important and positive life messages."
Hosted throughout February, the NRL Community Carnival is supported by every NRL club and key NRL ambassadors, and will travel more than 40,000 kilometres to visit more than 1,000 schools, host up to 80 Junior Rugby League clinics and visit more than 250,000 primary and secondary students throughout Australia and New Zealand.
NRL General Manager of Community Ellen Beale said the Community Carnival is an exciting opportunity for fans to get up close and personal with some of the league’s most outstanding players, whilst delivering educational messages on respect.
"The Community Carnival is an important and rewarding opportunity for NRL Clubs to visit thousands of supporters and fans, particularly those in regional and rural areas, and thank them for their support," Ms Beale said.
"This year, the Carnival’s theme and education lessons will focus on respect, belonging and support within a team or community and celebrating individual differences."
The Dragons will visit the following clubs:
Arncliffe Scots – Cahill Park, Gertrude St Arncliffe
Brighton Seagulls – Scarborough Park, off Production Ave Monterey
Earlwood Saints – Beaman Park, Wardell Rd Earlwood Hurstville United – Bexley Oval, Donnan St Bexley Kingsgrove Colts – Beverly Hills Park, Vanessa St Beverly Hills Kogarah Cougars – Todd Park, Princes Hwy Blakehurst Renown United – Renown Park, Judd St Oatley
Penshurst RSL – H.V Evatt Park, Forrest Rd Lugarno
Junior rugby league registrations for the 2017 season are now open – to find out more visit: www.nrl.com/play.
For further information on the NRL Community Carnival, visit: www.nrlcommunity.com.au/.