12th May, 2021 — Road safety
All roads lead safely home at Pyramid Hill Football Netball Club
There’s a little bit of magic going on in Pyramid Hill.
Hard to put a finger on exactly what it is, but it seems to be coming from the local football and netball club.
Social media manager Lauren Driscoll says the small rural community of about 450 in Victoria’s mid-north is blessed with a special kind of loyalty, drawing its members back to play years after they have left the town.
“We have a very loyal local base that’s just drawn to keep coming home,” says Lauren. “There’s a real shared connection, a pride in coming together every week for years on end.”
Many of its members have moved to Bendigo for study or work, so the Pyramid Hill Football Netball Club works hard to reward that loyalty. To attract players in a competitive recruitment area and keep them safe when they travel, these two missions come together to create one vision.
Big investment has paid off at Pyramid Hill FNC
That mission around member loyalty and safety was right at the heart of the Good Sports club’s decision to buy their own 30-seater bus to safely take players to practice, games and club events.
At $15,000 it was a big investment. So, the club’s die-hard fundraising demons went to work – and it paid off. “It’s been worth its weight in gold,” says Lauren.
For large events, like the annual ball, the club hires a full-size coach as well. They also hire trained bar and security staff for major functions, and work closely with the local police.
“The local policeman even attended the club ball. I think that’s really great, not just to have their presence but for new members to know it’s about working in with the local authorities to make sure we’re doing the right thing.”
Once the festivities are over and the bus has headed home, the town’s one hotel offers affordable accommodation for happy lingerers who don’t have a friend’s spare bed or sofa to sleep on.
“It’s at the forefront of all our club messaging. Every function, like when the best players are read out, those sorts of positive messages are communicated not just around safe transport, but around behaviour. Messages that we want to instil for the health and wellbeing of our members.”
Effective messages about road safety
“Rural areas, like Pyramid Hill, are over-represented in the road toll, says Lauren. “And I think as a football and netball club, we’re a really effective vehicle for promoting that safe transport message.”
“I think every football and netball club is a leader in their community, regardless of whether you’re rural or in the city. And it’s important that you take responsibility for the influence on outcomes you can have – positive or negative.”
Safe transport options are clearly promoted at games and on social media, and the club is fully behind the TAC Towards Zero campaign.
There’s a picture of the senior footy team on the club’s Facebook page with a TAC message that really hits home for Lauren: “There is no one that someone won’t miss.”
“And when it’s a picture in front of you,” says Lauren, “I’m looking at guys I went to school with, my husband, friends, family.
“We’re bringing it home that this is our community, take responsibility.”
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