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Olympics Unleashed program launched in Brisbane

13 September 2018

EDUCATION: Queensland schoolkids are set to be inspired by Australian athletes as part of the Olympics Unleashed program, launched in Brisbane on Thursday.

The program will see Queensland Olympians, Paralympians and those aspiring for Tokyo 2020 visiting school students between grades four and six, right around the state.

Four-time Olympic hockey player Mark Knowles said he was looking forward to motivating kids across Queensland.

“I’m so excited to help launch the Olympics Unleashed program and get out there to talk with kids about how they can be their own personal best, no matter what their passion is,” Knowles said.

“Olympians and Paralympians have stories that aren’t only sporting stories – they’re about the importance of finding what drives you, setting goals and working towards them. They’re also about how you react when you face challenges or have disappointments.

“These are lessons that every student can learn and grow from and this program will help spread them across Queensland.”

Mark Knowles at Olympics Unleashed launch

AOC CEO Matt Carroll said Olympians have unique stories of hard work, goal-setting and resilience.

“There are stories about a journey that’s unique to every Olympian, but there’s a common thread that binds all Olympians,” Mr Carroll said.

“An Olympic journey isn’t the minute it takes to get up and down a pool or the 60 minutes on a hockey pitch – it’s the years of hard work, by yourself or with a team, overcoming challenges to follow your passion. That’s the story athletes can share with students in the classroom.

“This program is only possible through the partnership with the Queensland Government. We thank and congratulate Minister di Brenni for his foresight and support in backing Olympics Unleashed.

“The AOC is proud of the response from the Olympians to embrace the opportunity to connect with young Queenslanders to promote active, healthy and fulfilling lives.”

Queensland Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni said the program will help school children experience the Olympic spirit and create a passion for physical activity.

“Registered athletes have already completed their training and are ready to hit the ground running at the beginning of Term 4, encouraging students to be their best in sport and active recreation,” Mr de Brenni said.

“The program aims to bring out the Olympic Spirit in all students, to pursue their passion, whether that’s in sport, the classroom, the playground or at home.”

Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni speaks at the Olympics Unleashed launch

Dual Olympic swimmer Tarnee White, sees the importance of motivating students every day as a teacher at Yeronga Primary School.

“It’s always inspiring to see people who have achieved something great, but at a school level it’s so important to see someone who has built those foundation skills – resilience, setting goals, being passionate and getting up when you fail,” she said.

“When you can teach those messages at this age it can carry over across their whole livesSo that kids can go on in whatever they do in life, to have the assets and skills to succeed in whatever they choose to do.”

Learn more about the program HERE and schools can sign up at HERE. Athletes will begin visiting school in Term 4 this year.

Dominic Sullivan

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