THE St George Illawarra Dragons this week travelled down the South Coast in name of the 2017 NRL Community Carnival.
With the help of Female Dally M Medallist Kezie Apps, the entire Dragons first grade squad travelled as far south as Bega and visited 32 schools overall across the two days.
Players and staff were joined by NRL Game Development Officers in delivering the 'Respect' program to local students, with lessons including interactive activities together with educational resources.
The Dragons participated in education lessons with students, focusing on the importance of respect, belonging and celebrating differences both on and off the field.
As the Respect program is linked to the Australia and New Zealand curriculum, every school received an interactive presentation which is supported by a six-week teaching resource focusing on respect, belonging and celebrating differences.
Young Dragons winger Reuben Garrick, from Gerringong, had the chance to visit his old stomping ground, Kiama High School, during the carnival.
"I was only at school two years ago so it was a bit surreal,” Garrick said.
“It's amazing to see how much of an impact you have, because you have sat there before, and what the students take on board.
"The people of the South Coast love their footy.
“The love is growing and the rivalries between the local clubs have always been massive.
“It's good to just see all the young kids loving their footy and the Dragons around here."
The Dragons also successfully hosted two community days in Bega and Kiama where the public were able to meet and greet with Dragons players.
"It's always good to come down to these community days and see the kids," Dragons recruit Paul Vaughan said.
"It's a good thing to do for them because I'm sure they definitely do appreciate it."