Footy players with intellectual disability are battling it out at the AFL National Inclusion Carnival competition in Sydney this week.
Eight teams from across the country have donned jumpers to represent New South Wales and the ACT, the Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria Country, Victoria Metro, and Western Australia.
The Carnival is played as per traditional Australian football rules, with adjustments to the playing numbers with 12 v 12 on field, and 4 players on each bench.
The event falls under the classification of Sport Inclusion Australia where players are required to meet classification guidelines to ensure the integrity of the event is upheld.
Throughout the week in Sydney players will also take part in a number of educational sessions on topics such as cyber safety and drugs and alcohol, all before playing finals under lights at Blacktown International Sportspark.
- Read more: Fixtures and results
Supporting inclusive sport
Earlier this year APM Employment Services became the naming rights partner for the SANFL Inclusive League which builds on the former successful C7 competition run by Adelaide Footy League.
The new league, established in collaboration with Inclusive Sport SA, includes existing C7 members Eastern Park, Goodwood, Kenilworth and Salisbury football clubs, with the addition of Christies Beach Football Club to offer people with disability in the southern region to get involved in competition footy.
APM Employment Services CEO Karen Rainbow said APM was proud to support the new league to give more people with disability a chance to get involved in sport to increase their fitness and social participation.
“Football is a very important foundation of Australian society and brings all types of people together,” Ms Rainbow said.
“But all too often people with disability are excluded from community and social activities, therefore we are very pleased to support the new league so everyone can get out and have fun while establishing new friendships and connections.
“This helps break down barriers and is an important step towards a more inclusive Australia.”
For more details on the new SANFL APM Inclusive League and to register visit sanfl.com.au/inclusiveleague