The AFL and Australia Post are pleased to announce the Multicultural Program will expand in 2015 to include 12 player ambassadors representing 11 AFL clubs.
Hawthorn dual Premiership player Paul Puopolo, Essendon’s David Zaharakis, Gold Coast Sun’s Nick Malceski, and Brisbane Lions’ James Aish will join current Australia Post AFL Multicultural ambassadors Nic Naitanui, Bachar Houli, Jobe Watson, Alipate Carlile, Stephen Coniglio, Jimmy Toumpas, Lin Jong and Patrick Karnezis in promoting some of the many diverse backgrounds engaged in Australia’s game.
AFL General Manager People, Customer and Community, Dorothy Hisgrove said the newly-appointed ambassadors were chosen based on community leadership and their commitment to growing the game nationally.
“It is important that Australian Football continues to provide an inclusive environment which attracts people from all cultural backgrounds to enjoy our game as fans, players and officials as the AFL upholds a commitment to strengthen diversity in our game,” said Ms Hisgrove.
“We are excited to expand the program to welcome Paul, David, Nick and James and look forward to the Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassadors playing a crucial role in raising cultural understanding and encouraging participation in Australian Football at all levels,”
Starting with the Australia Post AFL Community Camp in February, the ambassadors will play a leading role in giving back to regional fans by acknowledging their loyalty and support first-hand when the team is in town.
The Multicultural Ambassadors will be at the forefront of AFL Multicultural Round to be held this year in Round 19 of the Toyota AFL Premiership Season.
With the support of Australia Post, the round will celebrate ‘Many Cultures One Game’ and will highlight the community engagement initiatives being undertaken by the ambassadors and the entire Australian football industry.
In 2015, multicultural players make up 15 per cent of the AFL player list.
Australia Post General Manager Community Relations, Andrea Pearman said: “As the official Community Inclusion partner of the AFL, we are excited to announce the new Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassadors and welcome back the current Ambassadors that participated in our program last year and beyond.
“Together with the AFL, we share a strong and ongoing commitment to celebrating cultural diversity and sharing the message that everyone is welcome to our game, irrespective of their background.
“Multiculturalism enriches Australian neighbourhoods and our Ambassador program provides us with many opportunities to tell the story of how different cultures and the game of AFL can come together as one.”
Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassadors information: