How young sporting stars can get grants for competing
LOCAL athletes on Thursday were awarded grants to help cover the costs related to competing.
Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan presented the 20 local teenagers with a certificate in recognition of their achievements and confirmed their success in grant funding from the Local Sporting Champions program.
"Those who received the awards have excelled themselves representing our community on the national and state stage," Mr Hogan said.
The Local Sporting Champions program provides financial assistance to young people aged 12-18 to compete, coach or umpire in their chosen sport.
"Our region has produced some outstanding sportspeople in the past, and it is important that we support the next crop of our local sporting talent," Mr Hogan said.
"Unfortunately, succeeding in sport doesn't just take talent and determination; parents also often have to put their hands in their pockets to get their children to competitions."
Mr Hogan said he was "very pleased to be able to help these families with financial support through these grants".
"Sport is important in the development of young people: it teaches them lifelong skills like teamwork, keeps them fit and healthy, and allows them to excel in something they love and enjoy," he said.
"I encourage any budding champions out there who have the opportunity of competing at a state, national or international event to apply for a grant."
Mr Hogan said with the Tokyo Olympics only 184 days away he "wants to ensure our local sporting champions are given every opportunity to follow their dreams and represent Australia in Paris 2024 or LA 2028".
Grant recipients include: rugby union's Thomas Ainsworth (Casino) and Bryce Spencer (Casino); hockey's Abby Brunton (Greenridge), Kalani Franklin (Uralba) and Tahlia Halliday (Goonellabah); athletics' Natalia Hickling (Goonellabah), Meggan Ellis (Lindendale), Isaiah Freeburn (Casino) and Jessica McKie (South Lismore); swimmers Niquola White (Boat Harbour) and Sophie Mayes (Goonellabah); cricketers Darcy Heffernan (Dunoon) and Timothy Martin (Doubtful Creek); tennis players Sarah Martin (Blakebrook) and Amy Martin (Blakebrook); soccer/football players Zacharie Hartley (Goonellabah) and Ederyn Rankin (Rosebank); as well as gymnast Chloe Leeson (East Lismore), canoeist Declan Ellis (North Casino) and surfer Connor Snyman-Mulder (Wollongbar).
For more information about the program, visit www.ausport.gov.au.