Daniel Aye is twelve years old and migrated to Australia from Thailand in 2009 at the age of nine years old. Prior to the Sports with Newly Arrived Communities program, Daniel had never been part of a sports club but instead used to casually play tennis at both his primary and secondary school.
Daniel was very keen to play soccer for Ringwood City Soccer Club as this was his local sporting club and he had always wanted to play soccer as part of a professional team. Daniel has stated that being part of a sporting club has been a positive experience as he enjoys “doing team work” and “kicking goals”. Daniel’s family have been very supportive and his dad takes him to and from trainings every Monday and Thursday night. Furthermore, every Sunday his whole family attend his matches to cheer him on and are also on orange duty for a home game in the month of August 2012.
David Tattersall, the coach of the Under 13’s team at Ringwood City Soccer Club has had many positive things to say about Daniel’s presence in the team. He states that “it is a pleasure to have him at the club and hope he is enjoying it as much as we enjoy him”.
Mr. Tattersall further comments about Daniel’s commitment to the team as well as his commitment to upholding the responsibilities of being a part of a sports club:
“Dan has settled in very well in both training twice a week and also the games on the weekend. He is usually the first to training after myself and my son and enjoys the kick about with the boys.
Many of them go to school with him so they all seem to get on well. Dan really puts in 100% at training and this is reflected in the matches. So far he has scored plenty of goals in the B team who currently are sitting second on the ladder.”
The Sports with Newly Arrived Communities program has also been a positive experience in Daniel’s personal life and schooling, with his youth settlement worker – Theresa Jolley – stating that “playing soccer with Ringwood City seems to have increased Dan’s connections at school and developed his confidence to befriend Ringwood SC’s mainstream student”. Furthermore, Ms. Jolley indicates that this program is “very beneficial for Dan as it increases his social networks and his understanding of life in Australia”.