NORTH Nowra Bomaderry Netball Club’s Lisa McGee is one of eight winners in the 2018 Australia Post One Netball Community Awards, recognised for her dedication to creating a diverse and inclusive netball environment.
McGee has been received this award for her work to include players with special learning needs and Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD).
After volunteering to coach a young local player Olivia, who has ASD, McGee devised a plan to enrol Olivia as a ‘training partner’ allowing her to observe game play and volunteer to join in when she chose.
To facilitate her participation, McGee limited Olivia’s positioning on the court to minimise the effects of peripheral and sensory distractions related to her ASD.
She has fostered an environment where all players share the court and the ball without reservations and is an advocate within the club for players with any level of skill or ability.
Netball Australia CEO, Marne Fechner, said the awards, now in their fifth year, are designed to celebrate the individuals, clubs and associations who are making a genuine difference in ensuring everyone, regardless of background or ability is welcome in netball.
“This year’s winners are inspiring examples of the ethos of the awards and demonstrate the power of passionate clubs and associations breaking down barriers and bringing people together,” Fechner said.
McGee, who is joined by Emily Higgins (East Brighton Vampires Netball Club), Niketa Loftus (Craigieburn Netball Association), Port Lincoln Netball Association, Jamee Star (Mana Netball Club), Denise French (Nambour and Districts Netball Association), Adele Simmons (Wheatbelt Flames) and Southern Districts Netball Association as award winners in 2018, was over the moon to be acknowledged.
“The recognition from winning an Australia Post One Netball Community Award is such a privilege for something that brings me personal fulfilment,” McGee said.
“Being able to coach these players and see the joy it brings them to play is a great reward and it also provides an enriching experience for the players to learn how to be encouraging and supportive of their teammates.”
Australia Post general manager of marketing and community, Andrea Pearman, said the quality of nominations was once again exceptional.
“The stories that we see each year of the wonderful diversity and inclusion work being done right across Australia reinforces the importance of these awards in celebrating the power of sport to help communities work better for everyone,” Pearman said.
“We congratulate all eight amazing winners for their passion and commitment to their local communities.
“People like Lisa are leading by example and we hope by recognising them through these awards that others will also be inspired.”
McGee will receive a visit from an Australia Post One Netball Ambassador where she’ll be presented with an Australia Post Load and Go Visa Prepaid Gift Card, a netball signed by the 2018 Samsung Australian Diamonds team and a Certificate from the Australia Post One Netball Program.