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West Coast Eagles

Eagles fly in to raise awareness of disabilities

Karnnen and Javier Dowden, 4, admire the 2018 AFL premiership cup at GIFSA yesterday.Picture: Kelsey Reid / Kalgoorlie Miner

This article first appeared in the Kalgoorlie Miner and thewest.com.au

The West Coast Eagles helped to raise awareness of people with disabilities yesterday with the aid of the AFL premiership cup on Monday.

In recognition of the International Day of People with Disability, held on December 3 each year, Eagles community and game development general manager Richard O’Connell brought the trophy to the Goldfields Individual and Family Support Association, providing an opportunity for people to be photographed with the iconic cup.

GIFSA chief executive Robert Hicks, the uncle of Eagles’ star Dom Sheed, said he was grateful for the opportunity, made possible by his relationship with his nephew.

He applauded the Eagles for their initiative and interest in connecting with people with disabilities on this significant day.

“It shows that they do not forget people with disabilities,” he said.

“The Eagles also talked about Optus Stadium, which is one of the best stadiums for people with disabilities in terms of access.”

The cup was at GIFSA from 10-11am on Monday, with dozens of people posing for a photo opportunity.

Mr Hicks said the event had brought much-needed attention to people with disabilities. “There is one day allocated internationally for people with disabilities and a whole host of events happening all over the world to raise awareness.

“This photo opportunity was a chance for GIFSA to have an event to recognise people with disability.”

He said the Eagles had committed to an ongoing relationship with the organisation.

“That’s a very good outcome from (yesterday’s) event,” he said.