ON the eve of the Where There’s A Will (WTAW) round, National Rugby League (NRL) boss Todd Greenberg has praised Group 21 for backing such an important initiative.
And, so captivated by the Upper Hunter’s support of the local organisation, the chief executive officer will find time in his busy schedule to venture to the region this weekend.
The inaugural WTAW round incorporates all clubs in the BHP Billiton Hunter Valley Group 21 competition, from Greta Branxton to Murrurundi, Denman to Merriwa and those in between – Singleton, Muswellbrook, Aberdeen and Scone.
“Even though I’ve been to the area a few times, I’ve never watched a game there,” Mr Greenberg admitted.
“I’ll attend the Scone-Muswellbrook clash at Scone Park on Saturday, and call into the Aberdeen-Singleton encounter at McKinnon Field the following day.
“It looks like being a big weekend for Group 21.
“It’s a massive effort from all of the clubs to be involved – that really impressed me.
“The NRL spends a lot of time and energy in our own State of the Mind campaign.
“But, to see a local community’s willingness to educate people and reduce stigma, via WTAW, really struck a chord with me.
“It shows that it’s alright to put your hand up if you need help or someone to talk to.
“It’s certainly a powerful message – and I’m very supportive of it.”
Mr Greenberg said the code had a “unique ability to cultivate change”.
“Rugby league can make a difference in people’s lives,” he told Fairfax Media Upper Hunter.
“It’s crucial to use our voice, especially involving a huge campaign, such as WTAW.
“Hopefully, I can do my bit to raise awareness for them.”
Mr Greenberg will also use the opportunity to touch base with the “every day” supporter.
“It’s an important role for me – meeting people in the country areas,” he said.
“I went to Armidale recently for one of our indigenous programs.
“I’ll do a lot of listening and learning up there [this weekend].
“We need to hear some of the challenges and try to help where we can.”