The South West Football League Umpires Association have teamed up with Activ South West to formalise a program offering people living with disability the opportunity to enjoy a match day experience at the football.
Based off the Fiona McBurney Match Day Experience run by the AFL umpires at AFL matches, South West Football League umpires president Jason Crowe saw an opportunity to do the same thing at selected SWFL matches.
Mr Crowe said if they could put one smile on one person's face, the program would be worth it.
"The program is designed to give all of the participants a full match day experience," he said.
"The match day experience will include walking out with the umpires, having a photo with the two league captains, tossing the coin, and assisting the umpires at the breaks".
In return, the recipients of the program will receive a cap, a certificate and a signed football for the day.
Activ South West operations manager Darren McNab said this was an awesome idea and one he was really proud to support.
"Activ is thrilled to be working with the South West FL Umpires Association," he said.
"This inclusive community program really resonates with many of our customers who love the footy. We look forward to continuing this partnership and plan on creating more opportunities like this for our customers."
Six matches have been earmarked for the remainder of the SWFL season including:
- Sunday - June 30, 2019 - Payne Park (Bunbury v Harvey Brunswick Leschenault)
- Sunday - July 21, 2019 - Hands Oval (South Bunbury v Carey Park)
- Sunday - July 28, 2019 - Glen Huon Reserve (Eaton Boomers v Augusta Margaret River)
- Sunday - August 4, 2019 - Payne Park (Bunbury v Carey Park)
- Sunday - August 11, 2019 - Kelly Park (Carey Park v Augusta Margaret River)
- Sunday - August 25, 2019 - Payne Park (Bunbury v Augusta Margaret River)
SWFL general manager Simone Nani said the SWFL Umpires Association should be commended for this initiative.
"It is one we are happy to support", she said.
The SWFLUA plan to extend the program in 2020, to encompass the entire season at various venues around the SWFL.