The Korin Gamadji Institute’s REAL Healthy Program is proud to announce its new sponsorship of the Robinvale Panthangals.

The Pathangals are a basketball club, established in 2017 that compete in the Victorian Aboriginal Community Services Association’s (VACSAL) Statewide Basketball Carnival in Shepparton.

The sponsorship will ensure that the Pathangals receive funding for accommodation and necessary basketball equipment to compete in the 2021 Carnival.

Located on the border of Victoria and New South Wales, 86km South-East of Mildura, Robinvale is a small town that pushes above its weight in the competition.

Despite boasting a population of only just above 3000, Robinvale now has an all Indigenous Men’s, Women’s and Junior Girls team competing in the tournament.

Robinvale captain Steven Bowden said that the sponsorship meant “everything” to the players and would allow more juniors to compete.

“The past few tournaments we have had 3-4 teams entered and not once have we all had the same uniforms to show where we are from and who we are,” he said.

“I feel so proud to represent my hometown and could not be prouder to wear the name across my chest. We have worked our way from the bottom up, starting in Division 2 and winning our way to Division 1 which shows how much talent we have in our little community.”

The sponsorship will also allow, Bowden who has played basketball across Australia, including in the Big V league and with the Australian Institute of Sport, to provide more training and camps for the juniors coming through the ranks.

“I would love this club to become a legacy where everyone wants to come play for us, where we are known to be a strong competing club in all divisions,” he added.

Korin Gamadji Institute, Head of Programs Angela Burt said that the Pathangals aligned with the key objectives of the REAL Healthy Program.

“The Pathangals players understand the importance of keeping healthy and connected to culture,” she said.

“Through the sponsorship, the players will take on the role of REAL Healthy ambassadors, empowering other young Aboriginal people to keep active and healthy. We wish them all the best at the next VACSAL Basketball Carnival.”