Local students across a number of schools in Chifley got some words of encouragement this week from an unexpected quarter – Australian basketballer and NBA player Patrick Mills.
Australia’s first Indigenous player to make it to the US’s NBA League took time out from training for an Olympic qualifier to send a You-Tube video message to students participating in the No School No Play program.
The program – designed to boost attendance, engagement and healthy living – was recently launched at Plumpton High School by Federal MP Ed Husic and Basketball Australia CEO Larry Sengstock.
See the video message on You-Tube: Patrick Mills – No School No Play Program
Over 120 students across Plumpton High, four Chifley College Campuses (Bidwill, Dunheved, Shalvey, Mt Druitt), and Plumpton’s St Clare’s Catholic High School will all participate in the program.
“Staying at school, getting involved in class, eating properly and keeping fit can make a huge difference ,” said the 22 year old, who plays for the Portland Trailblazers.
“I couldn’t get to where I am today playing in the Boomers and the NBA in the US without doing all these things.
“That’s why Im so happy to hear students at Chifley are getting on board with the No School No Play program.
“Working with Basketball Australia you’re doing yourselves a big favour: you’re learning about the game I love and giving yourselves a great boost to your own future.
“So congrats to all our students across Bidwill, Shalvey, Mt Druitt, Plumpton, Rooty Hill and Dunheved – keep up the fantastic effort, you make me proud, enjoy the games.”
Mr Husic said it was terrific to have a great role model like Patrick Mills, take the time to send his thoughts to local students.
“Patrick’s got a lot on his plate right now, but he’s got a great sense of community spirit and it’s sensational that he could help give a few words of encouragement to local students.
“Success at his level of sport doesn’t come easily – which is why his message about building your skills through school is so important.”
The Australian Government’s $2 million No School No Play initiative is being delivered on behalf of the Government by eight national sporting organisations, including Basketball Australia.
Basketball Australia and their local project partners aim to create a range of rewards and incentives for participating teenage boys and girls who improve their school attendance and engagement.
The program is being supported proudly by a number of sponsors, including three local Woolworths stores at Marayong, Mt Druitt, Plumpton – who are providing healthy meals for the students.