North Gippy Pride Cup Round this weekend

The North Gippsland Football-Netball League Pride Cup Round has become a staple event across the league. Sale City face Heyfield in last year's Pride Cup.Photo: File

Blake Metcalf-Holt

THE annual North Gippsland Football-Netball League Pride Cup Round will be held tomorrow (June 22), with Heyfield Football-Netball Club hosting Cowwarr FNC during Round 10 action.

The weekend is a celebration of diversity, inclusion, and acceptance of members of the LGBTQ+ community with regards to community sport.

In her first year as league president, Martha Truin is excited for what this year’s festivities brings in terms of awareness and transforming the club’s and the league’s culture.

“Sport has the power to bring people together and create positive change,” she said.

“This event is a testament to our commitment to diversity and inclusion within our league and the broader community.”

The Pride Cup is also brought to life through the league’s major sponsor, AGL, mirroring the dedication that NGFNL seek to creating inclusive and diverse sporting environments.

“Sport should be a place where everyone feels safe and accepted, regardless of who they are or who they love,” AGL Loy Yang General Manager, Christo van Niekerk said.

“The Pride Cup game is an opportunity for AGL to demonstrate our commitment to equality and respect.”

What is now their second year participating in this event, Heyfield FNC said it was privileged to be hosting the initiative.

“Days like Saturday’s game allow us as a club to wear the Pride colours proudly in a team demonstration celebrating diveristy and promoting acceptance of LGBTQ+ people within our communities,” Heyfield FNC Treasurer, Carolyn Escreet said.

“Heyfield has a strong commitment to creating a safe and inclusive environment (and) always looking for meaningful ways to better ourselves and the club… we pride ourselves for the environment we have set embracing our players, supporters and extended communities’ diversity and differences.”

Cowwarr FNC echoed these sentiments.

“Being inclusive is something we pride ourselves on at the Cowwarr Football-Netball Club, so having the privilege to play in a game based on inclusiveness is something we take a great deal of pride in,” Cowwarr FNC President, James Ware said.

“(We are) extremely grateful to Martha and the North Gippsland board along with AGL for having us take part in this special event.”

Along with the Pride Cup, both teams will be bidding to win the Hollonds-Komen Cup, with both names playing large parts in each of the clubs with their legacy living on today.

NGFNL has more initiatives for the rest of the home-and-away season, including its Indigenous Round and a Mental Health Round with Mindful Aus.