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Salem named as multicultural ambassador

afl.com.au  March 15, 2017 5:51 PM

THE AFL and Australia Post are pleased to announce the 2017 Australia Post AFL Multicultural Player Ambassadors which will include 19 AFL and AFLW players.

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan said the ambassadors played an important role in promoting diversity and inclusion within Australian Football and the broader community.

“The Ambassadors represent 12 AFL Clubs, four AFLW Clubs, and a wide range of diverse communities throughout Australia,” Mr McLachlan said.

“They will play a crucial role in increasing cultural awareness, promoting inclusion and encouraging participation at all levels of Australian Football.

“We have increased the number of female ambassadors from two to four in 2017, which reflects the growing prominence of NAB AFL Women’s and the commitment we have made to build the foundations of women’s football.

“It’s a historic year in our game. In addition to the launch of AFLW, we are also taking a Toyota AFL Premiership Season match to China in Round 8. The landscape of football is changing and the ambassadors reflect that,” he said.

In 2017, multicultural players make up 15 per cent of the AFL player lists across the 18 AFL Clubs and 7.8 per cent across the eight NAB AFL Women’s clubs.

The Australia Post AFL Multicultural Player Ambassadors will be at the forefront of AFL Multicultural Round to be held this year in Round 19 of the 2017 Toyota AFL Premiership Season.

With the support of Australia Post, the Round will continue to celebrate the many cultures that live within Australian Football and will highlight the community engagement initiatives being undertaken by the ambassadors and the entire Australian Football industry.

Australia Post Managing Director & Group CEO, Ahmed Fahour, said Australia Post’s ongoing commitment to celebrating diversity is a vision they share with the AFL.

“Australia Post directly employs 37,000 people from 137 nations and almost a quarter of our employees are from non-English speaking backgrounds,” said Mr Fahour.

“We recognise how migration has enriched Australian neighbourhoods and we’re proud of our connection with the AFL, who represent a sport that unites so many cultures under the one banner.

“What's more this year we are thrilled to be able to welcome more AFL Women's players to our ambassador program, advocating for and promoting the valuable role women play in sport, the broader workforce and community.

“We are immensely proud to be able to partner with some of the biggest names in the AFL to attract new individuals and communities to the game and promote the benefits of social inclusion and diversity within our neighbourhoods,” he said.

2017 Australia Post AFL Multicultural Ambassadors information: 

  • Darcy Vescio (Carlton - Chinese and Italian) will support the AFL’s female multicultural talent strategy through development programs and will also make key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  
  • Sabrina Frederick-Traub (Brisbane Lions - English) will support the AFL’s female multicultural talent strategy through development programs and will also make key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  
  • Helen Roden (Collingwood – Fijian) will support the AFL’s female multicultural talent strategy through development programs and will also make key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  

  • Akec Makur Chuot (Fremantle – South Sudanese) will support the AFL’s female multicultural talent strategy through development programs and will also make key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  
  • Nic Naitanui(West Coast - Fijian) works one day per week at the WAFC supporting the ongoing development of the West Australian multicultural strategy and the Naitanui Talent Academy.  
  • Bachar Houli (Richmond - Lebanese) works one day per week at the AFL developing the Bachar Houli Islamic Schools Program in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and Western Australia, the Bachar Houli Academy nationally and the AFL’s annual Ramadan dinners. He will work on consolidating and expanding these programs further in 2017.
  • Adam Saad (Gold Coast SUNS - Lebanese) will work on developing the Bachar Houli Islamic Schools Program in Queensland, mentor participants at the National Bachar Houli Academy and provide support to the AFL Queensland Ramadan dinner. He will also support the AFL’s World Team at the NAB Under-16 National Championships as well as helping drive the Queensland multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.

  • Tom Nicholls (Gold Coast SUNS - Fijian) will support the Queensland multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round. Tom will also support the AFL’s World Team at the NAB Under-16 National Championships.
  • David Zaharakis (Essendon - Greek) will continue working on AFL Victoria’s talent programs, mentoring young multicultural footballers and will attend key multicultural events.
  • Jimmy Toumpas (Port Adelaide - Greek) will facilitate cultural education sessions with community leagues and community football clubs as well as assist with multicultural talent programs in South Australia.
  • Stephen Coniglio (GWS GIANTS - Italian) will work with the New South Wales Multicultural Talent Academy, help drive the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round, as well as a talent mentor to multicultural participants in the talent pathway.
  • Aliir Aliir (Sydney - Sudanese) will support the New South Wales multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  
  • Lin Jong (Western Bulldogs - Taiwanese and East Timorese) will work on participation programs in the Western suburbs of Melbourne including an umpiring academy focusing on the Asian community and will facilitate cultural education sessions with community football clubs.
  • Jason Johannisen (Western Bulldogs - South African) will support the Victorian multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  
  • Dayne Zorko (Brisbane Lions - Yugoslavian) will support the ongoing development of the Queensland multicultural strategy to help unite diverse communities through Australian Football and will assist in programs including the Queensland All Nations Cup.

  • Dyson Heppell (Essendon – Australian) will support the Victorian multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  

  • Christian Salem (Melbourne – Lebanese) will support the Victorian multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  

  • Majak Daw (North Melbourne – Sudanese) will support the AFL multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.  

  • Jake Kolodjashnij (Geelong – Ukrainian) will support the AFL multicultural strategy through key appearances at multicultural events, including the Toyota AFL Multicultural Round.