The Gabba isn’t just home to the Brisbane Lions .. it’s home to an new group of young AFL fans.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

AFL Queensland has extended the hand of football to include a group of Russian students at Woolloongabba in the League’s ever-growing Multcultural Program.

Earlier this month AFLQ staff, headed by Bill Renner, attended the Russian School to introduce the families there to AFL football.

The families, from the Gold and Sunshine Coast as well as Brisbane, attend the school on Saturday mornings to learn about the culture and history of Russia.

Sixty students (pictured) participated in a 30-minute skills clinic and were given a number of AFL items as momentos of the occasion.

This short visit was a forerunner to an extended half-day activity in which members of the Russian community will enjoy AFL clinics, games and activities to better introduce them to Australia’s No.1 winter sport.

And next Saturday (25 June) members of the Russian community will be invited to join a group of multicultural community leaders at Metricon Stadium, where the Queensland Government and Gold Coast Suns will be recognised for their contribution to the AFLQ  Multicultural Program.

Participants in the junior games to be held at halftime in the Gold Coast Suns – Western Bulldogs match will be made up of Auksick participants from Culturally and Linguistically Diverse backgrounds.

AFL Queensland Engagement Manager Trent Ryan said the League was excited about the prospect of partnering with the Russian community to make AFL football accessible for all ages – whether it be as a player, fan, administrator, coach or umpire.

To further enhance the bond in this important area of development, the AFL has recently announced that Round 17 will be Multicultural Round.

The Russian Community School. Part of St. Seraphim Orthodox Church, was established in Brisbane in 1953 and is located at 60 Hawthorne Street, Woolloongabba.

The school offers a range of courses for children three to 16 years of age.
These include an accredited grade 11-12 course in Russian language, subjects in Cultural Studies, History, and Russian Literature. Also, there is a junior for children in grades 1 to 10, and a kingdergarten and pre-school for children ages three to five.

Classes for grades 11 and 12 are held once a week on weekday evenings, with classes for grades 1-10 held on Saturdays from 9am-12 noon.

The school also provides optional art and choir classes on Saturday afternoons, and may run classes for adults willing to learn and refine their knowledge of Russian.

The school has created a vibrant, enjoyable, and caring environment, in which children can flourish in their studies.

The spirit of the school unites parents and encourages their participation in school and social activities, and parents are welcome to stay during the school hours and enjoy the company of other parents, traditional Russian food, tea and coffee.

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