The Western Australian Olympic Committee (WAOC), with support from the Western Desert indigenous sports council Ngurra Kujungka and Newcrest Mining Limited, recently conducted a visit to the Parnngurr community featuring two-time Australian Olympian Fergus Kavanagh.
Fergus, together with WAOC representative, Jason Pedulla, and Indigenous Sports Development Officer, Daniel Tincknell, visited Parnngurr school, where they conducted a classroom session and some fun skill clinics and games. Fergus spoke to the children and teachers about teamwork and his experiences with the Kookaburra’s at the Beijing and London Olympics. Fergus won bronze medals at both Olympics and also managed to win a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in 2010.
In addition to the teamwork message, the program’s aim was to encourage physical activity and to promote a wide range of sports in the community. The program was conducted over two days, and the visitors noticed escalating participation and enthusiasm from within the community. The first clinic saw 27 children of varying ages involved in an exciting hockey skills session, where they learnt skills in dribbling the ball while running, passing, stopping and shooting the ball. Following the skills session, Jason and Fergus presented Parnngurr School with an Olympic boxing Kangaroo and a book about the history of Australia’s gold-medal successes in the Olympics.
Once school had finished, the fun started again, with the children continuing to enjoy themselves as they took part in games of soccer and football game for a couple of hours out on the junior oval. The next day saw the children and teachers put all their new skills and teamwork into practise, in an exciting game of floorball. After full-time, the teachers and students thanked the WA Olympic Committee, Department of Sport and Recreation and Newcrest for their support. We wish Fergus all the best, as he is currently training hard to compete at the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games and the Olympic Games to be held in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro.