Northern NSW Football announce Newcastle Permanent Volunteers of the Year for 2020

October 15th, 2020

Northern NSW Football is pleased to announce the Newcastle Permanent Volunteers of the Year for 2020 across its Zones.

Northern NSW Football Head of Football Development Peter Haynes said NNSWF were delighted to be able to recognise the winners’ contributions.

“Without volunteers such as Thomas, Angela, Michael, Wayne, Col, Mel and Max our sport simply would not be in the position it currently enjoys,” Haynes said.

“Their contributions to their clubs have been key to their ability to provide positive football experiences for all their members. I am pleased that NNSWF can thank and recognise them on behalf of the sport.”

Newcastle Permanent Chief Customer Experience and Delivery Officer Paul Juergens congratulated the winners on becoming recipients of the Newcastle Permanent Volunteer of the Year award for their respective zones.

“Volunteers are at the heart of any club’s activities and operations,” Juergens said.

“This award recognises the great example of members giving back to their local club and community. Newcastle Permanent is proud to recognise and reward volunteers for their valuable contribution.”

As the winner of their Zone’s Volunteer of the Year award, recipients are now nominees for Northern NSW Football’s Annual Newcastle Permanent Volunteer of the Year award to be announced during the week commencing 26 October.


Football Far North Coast – Thomas Gough

Thomas Gough, the Lismore Richmond Rovers FC club president, has been involved with the club since 2011 and is now an administrator, player and coach of two junior sides.

Gough brings professionalism through his day job as a chartered accountant that has helped to evolve the way Rovers operate, to supplement the energetic work of many long-term volunteers at the club.

Gough said he was fortunate to be at a club that had so many experienced and generous people to lend a hand.


North Coast Football – Angela Skennar

Angela Skennar worked hard to help Yuraygir FC get players on the pitch this year.

With the COVID-19 pandemic, there was some reluctance for the club to field teams. But Angela ensured that the club’s children got to play football.


Football Mid North Coast – Michael Wallace

Michael Wallace took over as Taree Wildcats FC’s secretary this year, returning to the role to help turn the club around.

Wallace led the charge as the club achieved a five-star rating in the National Club Development Program, consistently working towards before finally achieving the goal.

Wallace works tirelessly on behalf of the club and is a driving force behind its success.


Northern Inland Football – Wayne Clarke

Wayne Clarke is the kind of volunteer every club needs, having been involved with North Companions FC for more than 20 years holding various roles during that time.

This year with field restrictions North Companions FC hosted the five to seven-year-olds at the club’s Marius Street fields. This involved setting fields up, preparing the area with appropriate CovidSafe signage, wipes and sanitizers, getting the games started on time, keeping the flow of parents and kids moving before and after games with regular updates then packing up as required.

In addition, the club had a lot of new parents to the game who Clarke helped to find teams for kids and timeslots for gameplay.

For Wayne, seeing the kids getting out on the pitch is very rewarding and the club are lucky to have him involved.


Hunter Valley Football – Col Chant

Col Chant has been the volunteer groundsman at Carmichael Park for many years and involved in the club for a long time. Col knows not only players from MiniRoos through to All Age by name but also how they play and their strengths and weaknesses.

He has been taking care of the field for so long that he has watched most of our All Age players grow with the club from under-6s.

Col not only maintains the grounds but also attends every home game and gala day as a grounds person and provides valuable support to the club with time keeping and the teams with moral support.

He is also available every training day where lights are required and during the football off-season maintains the grounds for cricket to be played, keeping the grounds in good shape with lines marked out and goals in place ready for the season to start.


Newcastle Football – Mel Africa

Mel Africa, Wallsend FC’s club secretary, has been an active volunteer at the club for a number of years.

Africa has done a fantastic job taking over from former administrators after the entire executive left and a new group of people were appointed, an extremely difficult task.

Africa has kept her stakeholders informed as to what is happening, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. She is full of great ideas, is approachable and happy to listen to feedback or ideas that are presented to her.

She takes on any role or job that needs doing and is flexible with an enthusiastic work ethic. Africa gives maximum effort to her club and is a big part of the Red Devils family which includes her two children as players and her husband who is an amazing coach.


Macquarie Football – Max McCorkell

Max McCorkell is a dedicated football volunteer who can be found at the club’s grounds most days. As vice president he does much of the work on the club’s fields, not only for South Cardiff JFC but for all users.

McCorkell tries his utmost to win as many grants for the club as possible to keep their grounds at a high standard.

He is at the club most Friday nights helping to set up for the weekend and is the first one there every Saturday to open the grounds and lead the team in setting up the four fields for play.

He is proactive and a huge asset to South Cardiff JFC. McCorkell is a wonderful rule follower and has helped with the COVID-19 changes every step of the way with a positive attitude.


About NNSWF’s Community Partnership with Newcastle Permanent:

Newcastle Permanent is the major partner of Community Football across northern NSW and has partnered with NNSWF since 2008, supporting the High-Performance Program and Junior Football Program.

Newcastle Permanent’s investment in football is one of its most important community partnerships and reflects the financial institution’s commitment to supporting the local community.

Integral to the Newcastle Permanent Community Football partnership is recognition of volunteers, coaches, referees and others on the ground who play a vital role in delivering the game across northern NSW.

The Community Partnership with Newcastle Permanent includes recognition programs such as Newcastle Permanent Volunteer of the Month, Newcastle Permanent Community Coach of the Month, Newcastle Permanent Referee of the Month, Newcastle Permanent Community Club of the Month, training tools for community coaches and volunteers, as well as the distribution of more than 10,000 free footballs to young players each year.

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