11 December, 2020
Cairns Taipans Indigenous Program visits Cape and Torres Strait
The popular Sea Swift Taipans Indigenous Program has completed another successful visit to remote Far North Queensland communities, recently delivering sessions to hundreds of local students on Thursday Island and Bamaga.
Headed by Taipans Indigenous Programs Manager and former NBL star Kerry Williams, the program aims to spread healthy living messages to children living in Cape York Peninsula and the Torres Strait Islands.
Since March 2019, the award-winning Sea Swift Taipans Indigenous Program has:
• engaged more than 2,000 Indigenous youth in 25 communities
• spent more than 150 hours delivering the sessions.
CQUniversity Cairns Taipans centre Nate Jawai made the recent visits extra special for the children as part of the regular program across the region, which encourages kids to stay in school, keep active, and eat healthily.
In 2009, Jawai became the first Torres Strait Islander to play in the world-famous National Basketball Association (NBA), and played a key role in the Taipans’ highly-successful 2019-20 NBL season.
Williams said the students are always excited to meet the local basketball legend, who grew up in Bamaga.
“Nate loves being back home. He is a positive influence for his community, and when the kids hear he is coming, they make sure they get to school, so they do not miss out,” said Williams.
“Nate is able to tell his story and address our key message of respect through story.
“Nate speaks at assemblies about his journey, and then plays games, hands out T-shirts, and reiterates his respect message – there’s always a lot of excitement from the students.”
In the past 18 months, the Sea Swift Taipans Indigenous Program has visited Warraber Island, Thursday Island, Bamaga, Murray Island, Mornington Island, Northern Peninsula Area, Kowanyama, Hope Vale, Cooktown, Wujal Wujal, and Cairns West State School, Parramatta State School, Manoora, and Mooroobool in Cairns.
Sea Swift Acting Chief Executive Officer Lino Bruno said Sea Swift had a proud record of supporting local communities, and was thrilled to support a national sporting organisation such as the CQUniversity Cairns Taipans.
“Sea Swift has been proudly servicing remote communities in northern Australia for decades, and we always play an active role in the communities where we operate,” Mr Bruno said.
“The Taipans are more than just a national sports team. They’re dedicated to utilising their organisation as a vehicle for social change, and we’re proud to be involved.”