Fellow Highlanders,

I thought I would take time to write to every player, parent and official and ask the simple question “ARE YOU OK?”

I understand that this is a frightening time for many people and with the situation evolving so rapidly it’s hard to keep the fact from fiction. Many of people have been stood down from work, while for some households both income earners are now at home. Some of you have found yourselves isolated due to pre-existing medical conditions and unable to enjoy your usual liberties. Life and everything around us is changing and while in time it will pass I want to ensure you have support to make it through the coming days.

I cannot give you any more facts than those that have been presented by Netball Queensland in regards to dates and potential recommencement of competitions. I also recognise that many associations have made decisions in regards to the 2020 season. The simple truth is we do not have enough information to make informed judgements at this time. Though when things stabilise and these decisions can be made we already have plans and policies in place to act accordingly. Though I don’t want this email to be about policies and procedures these can wait, I want to focus on you as a part of our HDNA family.

Our commitment lays with you and your family. Whilst we find ourselves away from the courts the welfare of every player, family and volunteer is paramount. HDNA has already released a home player training program, if you do not have a copy please let us know. We will also be engaging in a strong social media program to give content to players and volunteers to compliment the excellent Netball Queensland and Netball Australia programs.  Whilst as a parent I know social media can be a bane of our existence, for those people that do have access reach out. Send messages to team mates and fellow families to ask how they are going and if you’re able ask if you can help out. For so many people this will be the first time they find themselves out of work and unable to leave the house. For many the ability to leave the house and exercise, shop or visit friends underpinned their mental health and now this has been taken away. So I ask you again to reach out if you are able to do so.

Finally if you are struggling and need help we are here to stand by your side. The board comes from a range of professions and has a myriad of life experience and is willing to assist where we can. If we cannot assist we will find a body or an organisation that can. I have included my mobile number below should you wish to talk on any issue. I wish I could do more at this stage as speaking to many of you, I know there is a real sense of concern. What we can do is stand together as a club and as a family. Help those who fate has taken more from and work together until such a time normal life can resume.   

Yours in Unity

Graeme Thomas
Highfields and Districts Netball Association


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