News article by NSW Waratahs Media unit
The NSW Waratahs are pleased to announce batyr and Cancer Council NSW as their two new official charity partners for 2017.
batyr is a ‘for purpose’ organisation that focuses on preventative education in the area of youth mental health through peer-to-peer programs that engage, educate and empower young people to have positive conversations about mental health and to reach out for support when they need it.
Cancer Council NSW is the only organisation in NSW that works across every area of every cancer; conducting and funding world-class research, initiating cancer prevention programs, supporting people through cancer and into survivorship and advocating to ensure governments take action on cancer.
NSW Waratahs CEO, Andrew Hore said the organisation was keen to support charities that together would inspire people across the state to lead active, healthy and positive values and lifestyles through the game of rugby.
“One of our key focuses as part of our current restructure, bringing the NSW Waratahs together with NSW Rugby, is the development of talent through programs and pathways across the state, which is just as much about their on-field development as it is about their off-field welfare” Hore said.
“Like us, both batyr and Cancer Council NSW are active in engaging with communities and delivering programs across NSW to help empower develop people in areas of health and wellbeing.
“With over 130,000 participants, plus volunteers and families involved in the game in this state, their initiatives can go a long way in helping young people, especially in Clubs and schools, realise and achieve their dreams of representing their state or country in rugby, whether that be as a player or official.”
batyr CEO, Sam Refshauge said the organisation is thrilled to have been chosen as the official charity partner of the NSW Waratahs alongside Cancer Council NSW.
“When in any given year 1 in 4 young people will experience a mental health issue, yet only 23% will reach out for support, education and awareness play a vital role in changing these statistics,” Refshauge said.
“The partnership with the Waratahs will allow us to broaden our reach and impact, changing the way young people view mental health so that they realise that it’s OK not to be OK, that they’re not alone and that help is out there.
“In a sport where the “don’t be soft” and “toughen up” mentality too often masks what is really going on, it will be so powerful to have the support of the NSW Waratahs and the NSW Rugby community in tackling the stigma surrounding mental health, so that asking for help is seen as a sign of strength, not weakness.”
Jeff Mitchell, CEO at Cancer Council NSW, reflected the same sentiments saying the organisation was honoured to have been chosen as one of the charity partners of the State’s leading rugby body.
“Every year in NSW alone, more than 46,000 new cases of cancer are expected to be diagnosed. Cancer Council NSW is a community-focused organisation, working to reach anyone affected by cancer in communities across the state. We are extremely pleased to be supported by a sporting body which also has a strong community footprint across NSW,” Mitchell said.
“One of Cancer Council NSW’s priorities is to reduce cancer in the NSW community by encouraging people to lead healthy lifestyles. NSW Waratahs shares our vision of encouraging an active, healthy lifestyle, both through their professional teams and their junior sports development programs.
“We look forward to working with the NSW Waratahs to inform and empower community players, supporters and sponsors to reduce their cancer risk.”
The NSW Waratahs official charity partner selection involved an application process open to charities across Australia, with a set of criteria that included their link to NSW, focus on health and well-being and initiatives that benefit schools and junior rugby clubs across NSW.
batyr and Cancer Council NSW will both activate at NSW Waratahs and NSW Rugby matches, events, activities and other opportunities throughout the year as a means of raising funds and awareness for the two very important causes.