Ballarat Basketball, represented by the Ballarat Subaru Miners and Auslec Ballarat Rush, have set a new benchmark for sporting clubs in the community. In 2013 the club has donated $76,896 to charities, schools, community groups and fellow sporting groups by way of tickets, memberships, merchandise and hospitality packages.
Miners and Rush players donated 325 hours of their time to school visits which covered 34 schools in Western Victoria, basketball skills clinics for local community groups, and numerous community events.
Club Administrator Jimmy Hunt stressed the importance of Ballarat Basketball’s community driver, the Healthy Living Program.
“We’re very thankful to belong to such a tight-knit community here in Ballarat so we feel it’s our responsibility to represent our city with pride, motivate kids to play sport, and lend a hand where we can,” said Hunt.
Community support is a vital component for the Miners and Rush when recruiting players.
“We consciously recruit players who will be ideal role models; we have several players working at Ballarat Specialist School and donating their time to other school-based initiatives like Yuille Park Primary’s breakfast club and Delacombe Primary’s mentoring program. Many of our players also coach junior basketball teams both within our own competitions and in the school system,” said Hunt.
While the Miners and Rush’s American import players are able to commit the most time, local players such as Anthony Fisher and Kristy Rinaldi also find the time to get involved in community events and junior coaching.
Throughout 2013, $11,145 was donated to charities, $15,606 to schools visited by the Miners and Rush, $15,080 to schools’ own fundraisers, $16,105 to community events, and $18,960 to sporting groups from across Western Victoria.
The Ballarat Basketball Healthy Living Program will endeavour to achieve even more in 2014.