Imagine yourself a 13yr old boy, over 100kg’s, having to run around a full rugby field 4 times in under 5 minutes! That’s how fierce our trials were, and as rough as it sounds, through taking part in our trials I have met 21 awesome boys whom I am proud to call my brothers – that would come back around for another lap just to encourage me to keep pushing, to smile and not vomit.
My team brothers and I come from South Auckland; A region sadly known for crime, drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence, you name it. We’re also known for obesity, diabetes, heart disease, teenage pregnancy, again, you name it.
My brothers and I are fortunate in that we have been brought up in households full of love, however our families often have empty pockets for things not related to rents and food for our families. My brothers and I are determined to aim for bigger and greater things for ourselves and the future of our youth, and we need YOUR HELP please to give us that jumpstart in life!
How can you help us? Our one and only Tournament this year will be held at Mt Maunganui during the school holidays, and because most of us come from underpriviledged backgrounds, we can’t afford to go.
Going back to my training run, do you want to know if my lap time is now under 5mins? Not yet, but I know with the help of my brothers I’m getting better, quicker and stronger, for together, we are the Counties Manukau U14 Stingrays, Rugby League team – and we are brother’s for life. Please help us achieve our dreams and start our journey towards a better future.
Our band of 22 brothers, were chosen as the best throughout the South Auckland U14 Rugby League Clubs: Otara Scorpions: Abraham Leilua, Christian Semau, Philip Papalosa, Taylor Papali’i; Manurewa Marlins: B-Man Fargher, Carlos Murray, Ezrome Iosefa, Francis Morrison, PJ Sula, Greyson Bishop, Tristan Tualagi, Oliver Fifita, Quinn Tupou, Vaka Sikahele, Sione Moala; Otahuhu Leopards: Christian Langi, Samuel Hansen; Mangere East Hawks: Teariki Ford, Tuloko Havea; and the Howick Hornets: Jacob Hollobon, Kristopher Tusagi, Isaac Matalavea-Booth.
WHAT IS THE FUNDING FOR?
To help me and my team get to the NZRL U14’s Tournament in Mt Maunganui – 4 days Accommodation at Gateway Motor Inn for 22 players $5360; transport costs $2210; uniforms $1975 = $9545
WHY IS FUNDING REQUIRED?
Since being told of costs involved, some of the boys have said that they may not be able to go because their parents can’t afford it, as a majority of parents are beneficiaries and struggling to feed younger siblings, as well as pay rent, and everyday expenses.
I know that my parents are saddened by this – because it’s reality. So my parents and I are trying desperately to reach out to get funding so that my team and I can go together as a ‘brotherhood’ to represent South Auckland with pride.