Telco Together Foundation volunteer, Gerry Serrao, arrived from India with his family 40 years ago and connected with his new community in Australia through his love of cricket. Having recently finished his 43 year career as a player, Serrao is giving back through coaching, umpiring and volunteering.
For one session in early December 2014, Serrao joined other Telco Together volunteers to help Cricket NSW staff as they ran an In2Cricket program at Intensive English Centres (IEC) within high schools throughout Sydney.
“Cricket is close to my heart,” says Serrao, “and it was great to just teach the kids how to do the key motor skills to play this sport, because they have never done it before.”
The 70 kids taking part on the program that day had no previous experience of cricket, but after a session that involved group competitions and coaching, the youths from new and emerging communities gained enough skills and confidence to bat and bowl.
“For me, cricket was a way to integrate into the community, back home and here,” says Serrao.
Serrao’s personal connection to cricket offers a wonderful insight into the power of sport as a tool for social inclusion. Additionally, the work of Telco Together and Cricket NSW bring these opportunities to the young people from new and emerging communities.
“Overall it was an enjoyable experience,” says Serrao, “and the kids were friendly.”
SWB looks forward to future collaboration with Cricket NSW, and thanks all the Telco Together Volunteers for their time in 2014.
These initiatives are powered by SWB’s Social Inclusion Through Sport (SITS) program.