‘Playing for pride’ takes on new meaning for Yarram and Rosedale football netball clubs this weekend when they contest the fourth annual AGL Loy Yang North Gippsland Football Netball League Pride Cup.
The Demons play host to the Blues at Yarram Recreation Reserve on Saturday in a round of matches dedicated to the promotion and celebration of diversity and inclusion in grassroots community sport.
This weekend’s NGFNL Pride Round coincides with the lgbtiq+ Midsumma Festival in Melbourne, delayed because of Covid restrictions, and comes after IDAHOBIT Day last Monday.
The Gippsland Pride Cup was first staged in 2016 and has become a regular fixture on the North Gippsland Football Netball League calendar, with participating clubs showing their support of the LGBTIQ+ community to help tackle homophobia in sport.
Rainbow 50m arcs will adorn the football oval, while the respective senior football and A grade netball teams will be wearing specially-designed jumpers and dresses incorporating the rainbow flag.
Rosedale becomes the fourth club to take part in the initiative, following in the footsteps of inaugural participants Glengarry and Traralgon Tyers United and this year’s host, Yarram, which lined up against TTU in the most recent edition in 2019.
“The Gippsland Pride Cup is unique to the NGFNL and we are proud to bring this to the community of football and netball and hope to lead the way for others to follow,” NGFNL President David Kyle said.
“We know education is a key component to the Pride Cup’s success and we would like to thank the many organisations who have offered support, none more so than our major sponsor AGL Loy Yang who is well known as an equal opportunity employer.
“We have no doubt this will be another successful day and we welcome anyone who desires to come and attend and enjoy the events.”
AGL Loy Yang General Manager Nigel Browne said it was fantastic to see the Gippsland Pride Cup return on the 22 May after a challenging year.
“We are proud to be part of this important event for the LGBTIQ+ community,” Mr Browne said.
“The overwhelming support to bring the Pride Cup back this year highlights the event’s value within our local community.
“To show our support for this year’s event we will be projecting the pride colours on Loy Yang A’s cooling tower during Pride month in June.
“At AGL we are committed to building an inclusive and supportive workplace for LGBTIQ+ employees, events like Pride Cup allow everyone to come together and celebrate diversity across our communities.”
The action commences at 9:00am with the 15-and-under netball, with the main games scheduled to start at 2:15pm.