Simon Hunt was one of ten recipients of the VAFA Certificate of Merit at last night’s VAFA Sportscover 2015 Season Launch and with his permission we have republished his words below.
Good evening ladies and gentleman. On behalf of the certificate of merit recipients I feel extremely privileged to respond on behalf of all recipients.
Firstly I would like to congratulate you all for your outstanding contribution at each of your respective clubs over the many years.
The first question I asked myself when preparing this speech was – Why have these recipients, and many people before us, contributed to their clubs over so many years? Why do they volunteer so much time to their footy clubs?
In my opinion, people – both women and men –love to get involved in the community, and for us it’s all about the football and our clubs.
In my case, and I am sure it’s the same for everyone else here tonight; it all begins when you start by helping out in some small way. For me, I offered to help a friend of mine who became a senior coach. I started out as the team manager, I was then the runner, and then I joined the committee, became Vice President, resigned and had 4 beautiful daughters. Then 7 years later I decided to come back as President for another 10 years.
I became addicted to the cause. Your enjoyment grows, you build relationships and you form unbelievable lifetime and lifelong friendships.
I wanted to continue my involvement and help out. I had and have a great family, a pretty good career with a property services company, but I wanted to do something I loved and something I was passionate about – just like these committed people on this stage with me.
Family first, career second and my footy club third.
And, who wouldn’t get a thrill out of seeing people grow – and that includes all of our young men growing on the field and growing as people. I was extremely proud to be involved in my football club. All of us on stage have witnessed many of our people’s development and growth.
One of my major goals as President of the Old Xavs was to create a great environment for our players to excel – both on and off the field.
At last year’s Presentation Night I said “Our club is here for the players and the clubs culture is built by people – current players, past players, current and past parents and current and past volunteers – It’s about great friendships”.
Dedicated and passionate people working together is what amateur footy is about.
So, tonight we recognise and acknowledge the certificate of merit recipients and we thank our respective clubs for nominating us and we thank the VAFA for endorsing our clubs nominations.
Thank you and I wish all clubs a successful 2015 season.
– Simon Hunt (Old Xaverians), Certificate of Merit 2015.