Volunteering

2020 Northern Territory Volunteer of the Year Awards

Due to the rollout of the new national program, the AFL will open the 2021 Volunteer of the Year Awards nominations in February/March, which will consider nominees from across 2020. 

On 2020 Toyota AFL Grand Final Day; two of the NT's 2019 winners won national awards for 2020;

2020 AFL Senior Coach of the Year - Scott Bertus
2020 AFL Diversity Ambassador - Natalie Althouse

2019 Northern Territory Volunteer of the Year Awards

The AFL Volunteer of the Year Program is a volunteer recognition program which commenced as part of the Australian Football 150 years celebration rewarding outstanding volunteers who have given notable voluntary service to Australian Football.

The volunteer may have contributed to the completion of a major or significant project throughout the year or they may be someone who has contributed in a number of roles over a long period. 

The 2019 NT winners are listed below and more information on their recognition can be read online here

2019 NT Senior Coach of the Year – Scott Bertus - also won the 2020 AFL Senior Coach of the Year national award
This award recognises the outstanding work of a coach who works within a senior football environment in community football. The values Scott brings to the Katherine community reflect exactly what football should be about. A strong passion for both people and the game are projected in the form of an energetic coach, dedicated not only to the Katherine Camels Football Club, but to the wider Katherine community. Under his leadership, his club, the Camels, lead the way in assisting with the community, junior programs and involvement with umpiring. 
 
2019 NT Community Football Volunteer of the Year – Daniel Buckler
The AFL Community Football National Volunteer of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer within the grassroots environment of local football in their local community. Daniel has been a junior coach and volunteer at the Palmerston Magpies for the past couple of season and goes over and above in his commitment to volunteering at community football. Daniel fills many roles including junior coaching, looking after club equipment, recruiting sponsors, driving players to and from training and games, timekeeping, umpiring and volunteering in the canteen. 
 
2019 NT Junior Coach of the Year – Andrew Rock
The AFL National Junior Coach of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a coach who works within a junior football environment in community football. Andrew is highly respected by the players, parents and siblings of the Nightcliff Football Club and other clubs. In 2018/19, on top of club coaching, he also took on the role as coach for the Darwin under 12s team in the NT championships. 
 
NAB AFL Auskick NT Volunteer of the Year – Sharna Edwards
The NAB AFL Auskick National Volunteer of the year award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within the Auskick community. Sharna has been a passionate and dedicated Auskick Coordinator for the St Mary’s Football Club over the past two seasons. Every week she ensures that players from the club and parents of the Auskickers are involved as volunteers who run games. She is extremely professional and organised in her approach to every session which attracts large numbers each week. 
 
NT Diversity Ambassador of the Year – Natalie Althouse - also won the 2020 AFL Diversity Ambassador national award
The AFL Diversity National Ambassador of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer that has been able to promote inclusion for Multicultural and/or Indigenous communities in Australian Rules football. Natalie has been involved in the Darwin Buffaloes Football Club since 2012, in the capacity of player, coach, official and volunteer and enjoyed the highest success with her Under 18 Girls team in the NTFL. For the past three years Natalie has been a coach in the NT U18 Thunder Girls team as well as the Darwin Buffaloes U18 Girls team.  In 2019 she also coached the Woomera's Team when they were on a visit to Darwin. Beyond her coaching she volunteers across the grades in many roles -  runner, water runner, strapper, coordinates team fundraisers and is the club’s 'Wellbeing Champion'. Natalie also took it upon herself to deliver after-school football clinics for children at her school who were not selected to compete in the Inclusion Carnival and assisted in time-keeping/scoring and management of teams. She also provides transport and safe living space for children that come from remote areas, when competing in sports (not only AFL). 
 
2019 NT Primary School Ambassador Award – Carol Putica
The AFL School National Ambassador of the year award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within schools in promoting Australian Rules Football. Carol is the Principal of Ludmilla Primary School, a small school of around 100 students enrolled for 2019. She is always determined to ensure her students make the most of every opportunity that is available to them.  So far, she has booked AFLNT in to run 108 AFL sessions for 2019 with plenty more to come for Term 4. She also organised and funded a stay at the Michael Long Learning and Leadership Centre, which was a great reward for the students who have had high attendance and good behaviour throughout the year. 
 
2019 NT Secondary School Ambassador of the Year – Matthew Aird 
The AFL School National Ambassador of the year award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within schools in promoting Australian Rules Football. Matthew has entered a team for the past two years into the Secondary School Competition and successfully coached them to the grand final each year. Not only does he coach them on game day but drives them from their school to each venue, organises training sessions during the week and coordinates the team with all the off-field requirements including permission forms, medical and first aid incidents plus many more. 
 
AFL Disability Inclusion NT Volunteer of the Year – Coen McKinnon
The AFL Disability Inclusion National Volunteer of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer in promoting the inclusion of People with Disability in football. Coen is an outstanding volunteer that can be recognised as a big part of NT Thunder’s success at the National Inclusion Carnival. He just loves helping community clubs and organisations without any expectation of recognition or return on all his hard work. Coen was a massive help filling the on-field roles of an assistant coach, runner and water boy. Off-field he was even more helpful, assisting with driving the vans and navigating, doing the washing and resolving conflict and challenging issues that arose throughout the week.
 
2019 Community Umpire Service NT Volunteer of the Year Award – John Rawsthorne
The 2019 Umpire Volunteer of the Year Award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within the Northern Territory Umpires Association. John has been a dedicated member of the Northern Territory Umpires Association for the past eight years, and is a former president. He is always the first on the field and the last to leave at training, building comradery between the group and imparting his vast knowledge on others. He has dedicated many unpaid hours to help coach and mentor almost all of the umpiring group as well as run water each weekend. 
 
AFL Merit Award for NT – Peter Leonard 
The AFL Merit Award is awarded to a volunteer who has contributed significantly to Australian Football in a number of roles for a period of at least 10 years. Peter Leonard has been involved with football in the Northern Territory for over 15 years at both NTFL and NEAFL level. He gave 15 years of service to the Wanderers Football Club as a coach in juniors, Division 1 and Men’s Premier League. He was also the Assistant Coach and then Head Coach in the Men’s Premier League and is a Life Member of the Wanderers Football Club.  Peter also gave 10 years of service to NT Thunder from its inception in 2009 through to the end of the 2018 NEAFL season, where he filled roles as an assistant coach/specialist coach and worked one-on-one with players areas of the game. He was also responsible for coaching box dynamics and was a key statistician on game day. 

Northern Territory Volunteer of the Year Award categories

Due to COVID-19, the AFL is yet to announce what the 2020 Volunteer of the Year Awards program looks like. 

However, in most normal years any NT league or club is invited to nominate any outstanding volunteers for one the AFL State/Territory Volunteer of the Year across any of the following categories:

AFL Community Football National Volunteer of the Year

The AFL Community Football National Volunteer of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer within the grassroots environment of local football in their local community.

The following criteria will be used to assess nominations:

  • Must have given notable voluntary service with a Community Club, League or Region (or any combination thereof) within Community Football.
  • Must be a willing, voluntary contributor, having received no income from football (NB honoraria expected).
  • Must be an ambassador for the game at Community Football level, who acts and works for the best interest of the game in general without ever bringing the game in to disrepute.
  • Those making nominations should make no more than one nomination.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Community Football Volunteer can be accessed here.

NAB AFL Auskick National Volunteer of the Year

The NAB AFL Auskick National Volunteer of the year award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within the Auskick community.

The following criteria will be used to assess nominations and select state and territory winners:

  • Promotes Auskick values of fun, inclusion and enthusiasm.
  • Volunteers on a consistent basis and shows excellent initiative in helping deliver awesome experiences for participants.
  • Actively promotes other parents and carers to become involved in the Auskick community.
  • Effectively communicates with relevant stakeholders including participants, other volunteers, community figures, AFL staff.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory NAB AFL Auskick Volunteer can be accessed here.

AFL Diversity Ambassador of the Year

The AFL Diversity National Ambassador of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer that has been able to promote inclusion for Multicultural and/or Indigenous Communities in Australian Rules football. The volunteer may identify as being from a Multicultural or Indigenous background, however this is not a requirement of the award.

The criteria will judge candidates ability to engage Multicultural and/or Indigenous Communities through Australian Rules Football via the following points:

  • Support pathways for Multicultural and/or Indigenous participants to Play, Coach or Umpire in our game.
  • Promote AFL to Multicultural and/or Indigenous Communities, including Cultural Festivals and AFL match day experiences.
  • Provide the AFL with advice around best practice to work with Multicultural and/or Indigenous groups.
  • Promote a healthy Club/League culture which provides a fair, safe and inclusive environment for all.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Diversity Ambassador category can be accessed here.

AFL Primary and Secondary School National Ambassador of the Year

The AFL School National Ambassador of the year award recognises the outstanding work of volunteers within schools in promoting Australian Rules Football.

The following criteria will be used to assess nominations and select state and territory winners:

  • Must be a registered AFL School Ambassador.
  • Actively promotes Australian Rules Football both on and off field within the school community.
  • Uses creative initiatives to encourage diverse participation in Australian Rules Football - Playing, Umpiring, Club/Brand Engagement.
  • Connects with AFL products/staff - FDM's, SSP, Clinics, School visits, AFL 9's.
  • Promotes AFL values of inclusion, game progression and teamwork.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Primary and Secondary Ambassador categories can be accessed here.

AFL Disability Inclusion National Volunteer of the Year

The AFL Disability Inclusion National Volunteer of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a volunteer in promoting the inclusion of People with Disability in football. The volunteer may identify as having a disability themselves however that is not a requirement of the award.

The following criteria, as it relates to the inclusion of People with Disability in football will be used to assess nominations:

  • Positive impact on club/organisation e.g. membership, financial viability, new programs implemented, major events conducted etc.
  • Examples of leading initiatives, displaying teamwork, driving innovation, and exercising exceptional leadership.
  • Mentoring of new volunteers, players and/or club members.
  • Promoting a healthy club/League culture which provides a fair, safe, and inclusive environment.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Disability Inclusion Ambassador category can be accessed here.

AFL National Junior Coach of the Year

The AFL National Junior Coach of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a coach who works within a junior football environment in community football.

The following criteria will be used to assess nominations:

  • Must be an accredited member of CoachAFL in good standing.
  • Must have a current coaching role in either a Head Coach, Assistant Coach or Club Coaching Coordinator/Director capacity.
  • Must display and foster respect for umpires, opponents, coaches, administrators, officials, parents and spectators and be a role model for community.
  • Must demonstrate sound understanding of modern coaching principles and is engaged in ongoing learning and development.
  • Those making nominations should make no more than one nomination.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Junior Coach of the Year category can be accessed here.

AFL National Senior Coach of the Year

The AFL National Senior Coach of the Year award recognises the outstanding work of a coach who works within a senior football environment in community football.

The following criteria will be used to assess nominations:

  • Must be an accredited member of CoachAFL in good standing.
  • Must have a current coaching role in either a Head Coach, Assistant Coach or Club Coaching Coordinator/Director capacity.
  • Must display and foster respect for umpires, opponents, coaches, administrators, officials, parents and spectators and be a role model for community.
  • Stays up to date with the principles of coaching and skill development and is engaged in ongoing learning and development.
  • Those making nominations should make no more than one nomination.

The nomination link for the Northern Territory AFL Senior Coach of the Year category can be accessed here.

Each State and Territory will evaluate the nominations and ultimately will determine their State/Territory Volunteer of the Year in each of the above nominated award categories.   

State/Territory Volunteer Category Award winner prize

  • Invitation to the Toyota Good for Footy AFL National Volunteer Awards held in Melbourne during May 2020 for the State/Territory Volunteer Award winners of each category + guest
  • Return flights (Except Victoria) for the State/Territory Volunteer Award winners of each category + guest
  • Accommodation in Melbourne for 2 nights 

National Volunteer Category Award winner prize

  • Tickets to the 2020 Toyota AFL Grand Final (GFAFL19/76) for the AFL National Volunteer Award winners of each category + guest
  • Return flights (except Victoria) for the AFL National Volunteer Award winners of each category + guest
  • Accommodation for 3 nights (Thurs – Sat) in Melbourne for 2020 Toyota AFL Grand Final weekend
  • The opportunity to walk in the 2020 Toyota AFL Grand Final Parade
  • Pre and post 2020 Toyota AFL Grand Final functions 

When completing the online nomination form, please use the general information field to provide a full and comprehensive history of the volunteer’s service.  Past involvement with clubs, other than the nominating club should be detailed.  All details should be provided via the online nomination form.  Attachments cannot be included.

Nominations closing date:

  • Nominations must be submitted online by COB Wednesday 31 July.
  • Late submissions will not be considered

2018 Northern Territory Volunteer of the Year Program

The AFL Volunteer of the Year Program is a volunteer recognition program which commenced as part of the Australian Football 150 years celebration rewarding seven outstanding volunteers with a trip of lifetime for them and a partner.

Congratulations to Jamie Barry, 2018 NT Volunteer of the Year!  

From everyone at AFLNT, congratulations Jamie! 

Get involved with junior footy!

There are a number of ways you can get involved with AFLNT’s junior football programs and we are always looking for volunteers.
Without volunteers, our programs would not be able to run.

Help run an Auskick Centre

NAB AFL Auskick is AFL’s introductory program for boys and girls aged 5 – 8.
Centre Coordinators and coaches help run the Auskick sessions with games and skill activities with the aim to maximise fun and inclusion.
For more information on Auskick visit http://www.aflauskick.com.au/ or e-mail nab.auskick@afl.com.au

Be Rewarded

Apart from the reward from the children’s faces, there are some great prizes for AFL volunteers including the chance to win the AFL State Volunteer of the Year award!