Rugby youngsters pitch in to help fight the black dog
MENTAL health and droughts – two issues which cripple the Central Queensland region – will tonight be highlighted in a poignant fundraising initiative.
Rugby Capricornia will this evening host a charity event at Victoria Park to mark the arrival of Brisbane’s Albany Creek Brumbies U15 side to the region.
The regional visit comes following the cancellation of the Brumbies’ annual two-week tour of New Zealand due to COVID-19 restrictions.
A face-off against a Colts combined Capricornia Coast team will tonight also mark the end of the tour after taking to the field at Gladstone, Mackay and Airlie Beach.
However, it appears the youthful squad’s work will be far from over after the final siren sounds against a Colts combined team.
Rugby Capricornia committee member Callum Robertson said the do-good initiative came as request by Brumbies’ coaching staff.
“As part of their regional tour, [the team] would like to give back to some sort of degree,” he said.
“I’ve come up with the idea of a ‘row off’ as I’m back working in a gym setting and I thought it might be perfect.”
Both squads – along with some general public entries – will be put to task as they aim to complete a 500m row first.
Teams will comprise of five individuals aiming to row 100m each – with all profits raised to be donated to Anglican Aid Drought Appeal and The Black Dog Institute.
“Coming from Rockhampton myself and regional Queensland, the drought had a massive effect on not only colleagues, but also friends," Mr Robertson said.
“I’ve had a couple of friends attempt suicide and also take their lives as well.”
He added it was important to further encourage young men to break down the stigma of mental health issues.
“It is a big issue; I do want to highlight the drought as well. But at the end of the day, other than car crashes, [suicide] is probably the number one thing killing young men.”
Mr Robertson warned the young Brumbies squad should be prepared for a challenge all in the name of good fun.
“They’ve been on the road for about two weeks playing rugby all over the place, so they’re a bit sore, they’ve had a couple rough games so far with a couple big guys from the country teams.”