1,000 reasons to kick off the NAB AFL Auskick season

Auskickers across NSW and the ACT came together on Tuesday, 19 April to meet one of the game’s biggest superstars, Sydney Swans’ Lance ‘Buddy’ Franklin at the SCG yesterday to celebrate the return of the NAB AFL Auskick season.

Each of the children, aged between 5 and 12 years old, represented each free NAB AFL Auskick registration the AFL offered in celebration of Franklin’s 1,000 goal milestone.

“It’s pretty special to have the kids here today, it means a lot to me, and shows how Auskick is thriving in NSW and all over Australia. My main message to kids out there wanting to play footy is to just have fun, you can meet some new friends and enjoy your time being active,” said Franklin.

There are more than 450 centres in NSW/ACT, with Auskickers coming from far and wide for the afternoon with Franklin at the SCG, such as the ACT, Central Coast, Northern Rivers, Riverina, Illawarra, and Hunter regions, as well as the Greater Sydney area.

The free NAB AFL Auskick registrations provided an opportunity for 1,000 children and their families to get involved in footy in 2022. State registration numbers are up 10 per cent on last year’s participation numbers, with the full season yet to get underway across the NSW and ACT regions.

Buddy ensured 100 of the free NAB Auskick registrations were reserved for Indigenous participants, which has been buoyed by the 12 per cent increase in registrations of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in NSW/ACT.

The NAB AFL Auskick season has commenced all over the nation, with more than 100,000 children expected to make their return to footy by the end of May.

AFL Executive General Manager Game Development, Rob Auld said the program is the perfect introduction for kids of all abilities and skill levels.

“NAB AFL Auskick provides kids with so much more than the opportunity to play footy, it’s about them connecting with their friends, learning valuable social and physical skills while building their confidence.

“The return of the NAB AFL Auskick this year is even more special after two years of uncertainty, and we’re thankful to the volunteers, coaches, and families for their commitment to getting their kids back this season,” said Auld.

AFL Executive General Manager Customer and Commercial, Kylie Rogers, said the support of partner NAB ensured the grassroots program could continue to thrive.

“With the support of NAB, there are over 2,000 national NAB AFL Auskick centres around Australia welcoming back kids this month to play footy, in an environment that fosters self-expression, and promotes fun and inclusiveness. Together, the AFL and NAB are committed to providing the kids with the opportunity to enjoy football and I’d like to thank NAB for their unwavering support of the program since 2006,” said Rogers.

For more information about NAB AFL Auskick you can visit play.afl/auskick


Photos: Phil Hillyard & Nigel Owen