Northern NSW announces partnership with AFL Vanuatu

AFL North West NSW, together with AFL Hunter Central Coast and AFL North Coast, is pleased to announce an International Community Partnership with AFL Vanuatu. This partnership will bring great benefits to all three Northern NSW Leagues and to AFL Vanuatu.

In the early 2000’s, AFL Vanuatu, through Australian ex pats, formed a local committee which was formally recognised by the AFL.

Currently AFL Vanuatu operates mainly in the capital city of Port Vila with a small presence in Luganville, the main city of Espirito Santo (the largest of the islands) and the second largest city in Vanuatu.

Currently AFL Vanuatu has the following programs:

  • Senior Men’s competition with 6 teams
  • Senior Women’s competition with 3 teams
  • Primary school competition with more than 20 schools (over 2,000 children annually)
  • Secondary school competition with more than 7 schools (over 600 youth annually)
  • School program for children with disabilities in conjunction with education department
  • Pikinini Kik (Auskick) – community-based program that has between 70-120 children each week
  • Under 15 team that participates in the South Pacific championships in Fiji annually

With a very small operating budget and limited funding from AFL which allows AFL Vanuatu to run basic programs, the appetite for footy is far exceeding the current capacity to deliver.

As part of the International Community Partnership, AFL Vanuatu are committed to facilitating an opportunity each year for youth aged players across AFL North West, AFL Hunter Central Coast, and AFL North Coast, to participate in a football and cultural experience in Vanuatu. This opportunity would be player/participant funded and could include games against similar aged players from Vanuatu, cultural experiences to gain insight into the culture of the Ni-Van people, as well as other tourist activities.

AFL North West, AFL Hunter Central Coast, and AFL North Coast will commit to a yearly fundraiser that will see funds going towards the growth and development of footy in Vanuatu. Clubs can also donate any old/unused football apparel and/or equipment to the footy clubs of Vanuatu.

AFL Vanuatu currently has a GoFundMe page set up to raise funds for their youth Under 15 team to participate in the South Pacific Championships in Fiji (December 2019). If you would like to donate to their trip please click here for more information.

Clubs across all three Leagues also have an opportunity to host AFL Vanuatu players, as well as benefit from travel packages for teams/groups wishing to travel over to the island nation. It is hoped that any groups travelling over from the Northern NSW area will have the opportunity to meet and pass on some footy skills to the those playing our great game in Vanuatu.

More information will be distributed to clubs on all opportunities once more information comes available. Please join us in welcoming AFL Vanuatu to the Northern NSW AFL family.