Footy fundraiser to fight cancer

ST Mary’s Primary School Sale is gearing up to fight cancer on September 7 with its Footy Colours Day fundraiser, and is encouraging everyone to join the Fight Cancer Foundation team and do the same.

The students and staff will wear gear from their favourite teams, and participate in a parade and a longest kick competition.

Money will be raised through gold coin donations on the day, and a hot dog and pie stand — traditional footy cuisine.

Teacher Joel Brayshaw said it was a good time to get involved, as it was footy finals time.

“The kids come all dressed up, and I’ve got each of the club theme songs — I get them to all come out the front, they all sing the song and cheer their club theme song,” he said.

Another teacher, Sue Bertacchini-Jones, added there were other benefits — talking about footy in class and getting active outside.

“We get them to talk about why they barrack for a team, if it’s a family thing, some of them have four teams in the one family,” she said.

“We also mention the fitness aspect and get them out there to have a kick, have fun while you’re getting fit.”

The school’s Judith Hay said a former teacher, Simone Langshaw, introduced the concept.

“It was purely to raise money for cancer, because there’s families here that have been affected, and she thought it was a fun way to get the kids involved,” she said.

“We’ve been doing it for quite a few years and we raise quite a bit of money for such a small school.”

The money will go to the Fight Cancer Foundation, and the school will be among hundreds of others across Australia raising money to help young people with cancer continue their education.

National ambassadors include AFL and AFLW stars, as well as NRL and A-League players.

The charity works with major paediatric hospitals to make sure young cancer patients can continue their schooling and stop them falling behind their peers, so they can successfully transition back to school when their treatment is complete.

Fight Cancer Foundation’s managing director Eric Wright said it was a fun and easy way to make a difference.

“Footy Colours Day makes sure kids fighting against cancer are not disadvantaged by their illness and have the best opportunity to achieve their full education and career potential,” he said.

“Young children with cancer are absent from school for long periods during treatment and recovery, often becoming isolated from their school and friends.

“Many drop class levels when they return to school and find it difficult to engage with their education. We do everything we can to support the children and their family through these challenges.”

To learn more about Fight Cancer Foundation and its mission to give hope and save lives, visit fightcancer.org.au.