Do you know about our Free Kick Program?
In 2016 the Northcote Cougars began the Free Kick program to assist disadvantaged children by participating in community sport, as well as to learn to be part of a team and club outside of their normal environment. It has also helped to raise awareness and acceptances of cultural differences within the NJFC and opposition clubs within our competitions.
By providing transport, uniforms and free membership the Free Kick program has enabled children of diverse backgrounds to join in training and playing games. The program has grown from 8 kids in 2016 to over 30 boys and girls from Northcote, Collingwood, Richmond and Fitzroy participating in 2017. In 2017 we also introduced a breakfast club for players, for which we can always do with more volunteers to help run.
To support the expanding Free Kick Program the club introduced an additional optional welfare contribution to membership fees. The club has also received support from the City of Darebin (Darebin community cash grant 2016-2017) and generous contributions from Andrew Chapman from Merchant Funds Management Pty Ltd. Fundraising has also helped to support the program.
The Cougars are looking to further develop the program, with a goal of including more kids from the Darebin area. However, additional help from the community is needed to make this happen. We particularly need volunteers to help transport the kids to and from training. Volunteers are required to have a current Working with Children Check, in accordance with our Child Safety procedures.