Our Flying Boomerangs fly to Northern Territory

Western Sydney’s Hunter McAuliffe and Wagga Wagga’s Kai Watts recently took part in a tour to the Northern Territory as a part of their commitments in being selected in the National Indigenous Talent and Leadership Development program.

Flying north with the team of over twenty Under-16 year old boys from around Australia, the group took part in various activities including army training, leadership talks, a trip to Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island) to meet the locals, and also played a game of footy against a local Territorian team, St Mary’s.

McAuliffe said the trip was a once in a lifetime experience.

“The experience in Darwin was incredible as it allowed me to learn a lot about a wide variety of Indigenous culture though guest speakers, coaches and the trip to Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island),” said McAuliffe.

“Although my playing capabilities were limited due to a back injury, I still thoroughly enjoyed the program as I was able to embrace the educational side of the program where we learnt about culture, personal development and professionalism.

“We were also blessed with the opportunity to hear from individuals who have experience within the AFL such as Matthew Stokes, Cyril Rioli, Tyson Goldsack and Levi Greenwood. I was also able to learn a lot from the Strength and Conditioning coaches about how to prepare yourself to ensure that you can perform at the highest level.”

The tour’s day trip to Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island) seemed to have particularly everlasting impact on the teenagers, who enjoyed immersing themselves in the local culture.

“The best part of the program was when the squad visited  Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island), a small Indigenous community approximately 500km east of Darwin.

“Experiencing their lifestyle first-hand was amazing and everyone we met within the community was welcoming towards us. Personally, the highlight of the program would have to be playing with the children in Galiwin’ku.”

As has become tradition with the Flying Boomerangs, the squad also spent time learning the famous war cry of the team, which has been performed before their matches since 2009.

“Learning and being able to be part of the Flying Boomerangs war cry was definitely something special that I have taken from the program. I was privileged to have taken part in such a well-respected war cry that many past Flying Boomerangs members have executed in front of their opponents.”

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