Queensland rugby league royalty and Deadly Choices Ambassadors, Steve Renouf, Petero Civoniceva and Bo de la Cruz, came together at South Pine Sports Complex on Wednesday, to launch the 2019 QAIHC Arthur Beetson Foundation Queensland Murri Carnival.
This year’s format is bound to entice interest from right across Queensland, with up to 30,000 people expected at the venue across five days of competition from October 1-5.
Established in 2011, the Carnival draws on the popularity of rugby league in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, to promote the value of health and education to young Indigenous people.
“Upwards of 100 teams across Open Men’s and Women’s divisions, plus under-age grades in boys and girls will compete in our annual showpiece, focussed on community connection and overall health and well-being among participants and spectators,” confirmed ABF Director Brad Beetson.
“We encourage all Queensland communities to start thinking about their plans for the week, as the 2019 QMC will be an event not to be missed.
“On the back of last year’s successes at the Bindal Sharks in Townsville, we’ll see an expansion of underage competition with Under 13s, 15s and 17s for boys and Under 15s and 17s for the girls.
“With the support of the various Deadly Choices regional teams scattered throughout Queensland, we’re looking to have all regions well represented across the grades and in open competition.
“Our smoke-free, alcohol-free event will require participants to have their 715 health checks up to date, adults enrolled to vote, while youngsters also need a 90% school attendance rate.”
Local, State and Federal funding, coupled with the valued support of the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (QAIHC), Moreton Bay Regional Council and Queensland Rugby League (QRL), sees the annual showpiece make its debut appearance at South Pine Sports Complex.
“The Murri Rugby League Carnival is a major health promotion event in Queensland and contributes to increased health literacy and access to primary and preventative health services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. It’s so much more than just a football carnival”, said CEO of the Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council (QAIHC), Neil Willmett.
“The Murri Carnival achieves significant health and education outcomes, and the requirements for all participants to have a health check and those of school age to maintain a high level of school attendance emphasise the important messaging underpinning the event.
“QAIHC is proud to sponsor the Murri Carnival and its contribution to closing the gap in health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples,” said Mr Willmett.
“QAIHC is excited to be undertaking a study to explore how Carnival participation as a player, spectator, or an official, may influence levels of accessing health services and overall knowledge and understanding of preventive health, contributing important data to inform evidence-based health promotion.”
As proud hosts, the Moreton Bay Regional Council sees major benefit in its association with such a prestigious sporting tournament that attracts visitation from right across Queensland.
“Moreton Bay Regional Council is a proud sponsor of this deadly event and I’m looking forward to the carnival taking place at the South Pine Sports Complex, home of the Albany Creek Crushers, later this year,” Mayor Allan Sutherland said.
“Sport is more than just a game - it’s culture, community and opportunity. Sport has the power to give us something to strive for.
“It teaches discipline, work ethic and above all, solidarity with our peers and teammates.
“The Queensland Murri Carnival takes this to another level — championing the health, education and Deadly Choices for Indigenous people.
“We are proud to be sponsors of a carnival which stands for so much more than just a game.”
Registrations are now open for the QAIHC ABF Queensland Murri Carnival. Team coaches and managers are encouraged to ensure all their players are up-to-date with their 715 health checks, adults currently enrolled to vote, while youngsters maintaining a 90% school attendance rate.
If not, book in for your 715 at your local Aboriginal Medical Service (AMS), before going online to register for the QMC at www.murrirugbyleague.com.au.