Over one hundred Korin Gamadji Institute alumni competed in last weekend’s Statewide Koori Football and Netball Carnival in Bendigo.

Several past program participants and current staff members took to Bendigo’s Epsom-Huntly Reserve in football and netball events.

KGI Director, Aaron Clark, played for Lake Condah Wanderers in the Division 1 football competition.

Clark’s side fell just short of advancing to the grand final, going down to Gippsland Eagles in Sunday’s semi-final 47-28.

Clark labeled the event an overwhelming success.

“Phil Egan worked tirelessly to ensure the carnival ran smoothly and it was a fantastic event,” Clark said.

“It was great to see a number of past program participants competing across the two days, which is a testament to the work we do here at the KGI.”

Last month, the KGI welcomed former Richmond player, Egan, to its staff as NAIDOC Coordinator.

Egan’s role supports the new partnership between the KGI, VicHealth and the Victorian NAIDOC Football and Netball Committee.

Egan played 125 games for the Tigers from 1982-1989, and now manages Binmada, a consultancy for Education, Organisation and Community Development.

The theme for the carnival was Murrun Dhelk, which means “living good health” in the Jarra language, and it promotes healthy active lifestyles to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Key messages included the importance of regular eye health checks and managing diabetes, and the benefits of drinking water instead of sports and soft drinks.

The weekend also featured a variety of cultural and family-friendly activities including Indigenous hip hop dancing and DJs, Specky Dreaming and Net Set Go clinics, Ultimate Frisbee, food and health promotion stalls, face painting and performances from the Australian Defence Force Band.

It was well-attended by former and current AFL players, including Western Bulldog Jake Stringer, as well as Senator Patrick Dodson, Warren Snowdon and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Natalie Hutchins.