The NAIDOC Aboriginal men’s golf challenge celebrated its 10 year anniversary this year.
A total of 75 men attended the day, with teams from Forster, Taree and Port Macquarie competing.
Senior Aboriginal health worker with Hunter New England Local Health District, Elliott Stewart said, “Each year we like to engage with other service providers to discuss the importance of health issues that affect Aboriginal men on a daily basis.
“Throughout the year in our men’s group meetings, this information is delivered to the men with open discussions and listening to yarns about drugs and alcohol, diabetes, cancer, mental health and heart disease.
“This information is vital and helps educate our men and community.”
Building these connections with local health service providers can help guide and support participants to live a better life.
The golf challenge is held in NAIDOC week each year, with all men’s group participants and local Aboriginal men encouraged to attend.
This year the event was attended by local NRL celebrity Latrell Mitchell, who represented his community in the Taree team.
“Latrell said he always loves coming back to his community around NAIDOC week just to be around family and friends,” Elliot said.
“He also makes time to go to local football matches to support his community, the Taree Bulls.
“Having Latrell attend and present prizes definitely put a smile on all of the men’s faces.
“He made it even more special by taking photos and signing autographs that will be memorable for all, not to mention he won longest drive and nearest to the pin on the day.
“It is always great to see new faces participate in the challenge and be proactive amongst the group.
“This event also gives the men the opportunity to catch up with their family and friends from other communities.
“Our golf challenge is a drug and alcohol-free event, where we encourage healthy lifestyles by supplying participants with a healthy lunch and being involved in physical activity by walking around the golf course.”
The day was a great succes, thanks to the support of local sponsors, without whose generous donations the event wouldn’t be able to reward the participants with gifts and prizes.
“Special mention to Tobwabba AMS, who supplied dress shirts for all players that participated for the Forster team and each participant wore their shirts proudly representing their community,” Elliot added.
“Also not mention Tuncurry Beach Bowling and Stallworthy Building for their valuable contributions.