By Ant Wingard
It is the season for giving and Victoria Point JAFC have embodied just that as the club are set to once again help those in the community this festive season.
Over the coming weeks, the Sharks and their community will collate a sizeable number of presents of which they will then donate to the Ronald McDonald House in South Brisbane later in December.
The gift drive is now somewhat of a tradition for Victoria Point, who last year donated over 100 presents to children at the Ronald McDonald House and looked to do the same again this year.
On December 15, nearly 50 parents and junior players from the Sharks will head to the Ronald McDonald House to spend a morning with its tenants for breakfast and the giving of gifts.
Victoria Point JAFC Club President, Justin Stone, said the initiative came about following a speech that resonated with him last year.
“I’ve always had a soft spot for the families in the house,” Stone told aflq.com.au.
“At the 2018 season launch for AFL Brisbane Juniors at Ronald McDonald House, I saw Dr John Gilmour – Ronald McDonald House Charities South East Queensland CEO – make a speech that really hit me pretty hard.”
“He said that you guys get to see kids every week playing sport, we’re just trying to give kids that chance by getting them better so they can play.”
The Sharks are hoping to receive at least 90 presents for this year’s drive to ensure not one child who calls the Ronald McDonald House home misses out – a target which Stone is hoping they can achieve once again.
The Ronald McDonald House in South Brisbane gives seriously ill children the chance to stay with their families in a supportive, comfortable environment close to their hospital.
In 2019, over 3300 people called the Ronald McDonald House in South Brisbane home across the complex’s 79 various rooms.
Stone said together, the Victoria Point community has the opportunity to make a difference as Christmas draws closer.
“At the Sharks, we try and teach the kids and parents that we are members of a club which is part of community that is bigger than us,” he said.
“It’s hopefully teaching our kids to develop an attitude of gratitude and appreciate what they have.”
“For us to take presents and put a beaming smile on a seriously ill child’s face, is a wonderful experience and hopefully our kids go on to make a difference in their community somehow.”
If you wish to donate to the Ronald McDonald House directly, you can donate <link>.