Richmond Football Club’s Round 19 of the AFL season on 28 July was dedicated to the Alannah & Madeline Foundation.
Richmond players donned special-edition Foundation-branded guernseys, featuring splashes of purple along with our logo. This is incredibly special as it’s part of a drawing that Alannah did just before the Port Arthur tragedy. The guernseys also featured drawings and inspiring messages of luck from children in our Children Ahead program.
Player-worn and signed guernseys were also auctioned post-game, adding to the amazing game day tally of $75,000.
The day would not have been possible without the Foundation’s army of 150+ volunteers who so generously gave their time for our cause. We thank every one of you.
A month prior to Match Day, Richmond senior coach Damien Hardwick and captain Trent Cotchin helped the Foundation to reach a bitter-sweet milestone, packing its 85,000th Buddy Bag.
Buddy Bags are backpacks of basic essentials given to children on arrival in emergency accommodation. Many of these children arrive with only the clothes they are wearing.
Filled with basics such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, pyjamas, underwear, socks, pillowcase, face washer, an activity and reading book, photo frame and the all-important teddy bear, they are items that most of us take for granted everyday.
The Foundation’s CEO, Lesley Podesta, said that it is daunting to think of the numbers of children who have received Buddy Bags since the program started in 2007.
“So many have been distributed over the past decade, but we know the need just keeps growing,” Lesley said.
“We’re so grateful for the amazing work the Richmond Football Club and its players, coaches and the Tiger Army do to continue to help Australian children in need.
“I wish this service wasn’t required but, unfortunately, there is a constant demand from across the country. We are proud that together we can make a real difference for so many children.”
Richmond CEO and father of three, Brendon Gale, said the partnership with the Alannah & Madeline Foundation helped to put football into perspective.
“The numbers are alarming. The Foundation supplies 10,000 Buddy Bags to children in emergency accommodation across the country every year. As a father, that’s a difficult statistic to consider, but for some families, that situation is their reality,” Brendon said.
“As a football club, we will do anything and everything we can to support the Foundation to reduce the incidence of violence and bullying to children.”
Our heartfelt thanks to our Community Partner, Richmond Football Club and the Tiger Army; together we really are building a safer world for kids.
Go Tiges in 2019!
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