Djarrak Football Club with support from the Rirratjingu Football Program and the Rirratjingu Aboriginal Corporation prides itself on striving to create better people, not just better players. The club has transformed the way it goes about its business on and off the field and a number of the clubs members are excelling in life away from football as well as giving their all on Saturday afternoons.
Djarrak Football Club Men's player Nyalik 'Lee' Mununggurr and Women's player Rakrakpuy Marika today received their Certificate II in Conservation And Land Management at the Batchelor Institute Yirrkala Graduation Ceremony held at the Roy Marika Stage, Buku Larrnggay Art Centre Yirrkala.
Senior Coach Hayden Rickard attended the graduation ceremony and was thrilled to see both players receive their certificates. He said "Its a fantastic achievement for both Nyalik and Rakrakpuy to receive their certification today amongst a host of graduates both Yolngu and Balanda. The club is extremely proud of their achievements here today. We have a number of players completing education whilst in the workforce and our relationship with the Clontarf Foundation ensures we are across our junior members behaviours away from the field also. We want our people to do well in life".
Djarrak FC has players that are employed in local indigenous service providers such as Dhimurru Aboriginal Corporation, YBE, Miwatj Health Aboriginal Corporation and also at Rio Tinto Gove Operations. Some of the clubs members are employed directly through Rirratjingu Mining. The club is in the fortunate situation where Senior Advisor Bernie Price is employed as Director | Clontarf Academy Yirrkala School. Price has a fantastic relationship with the junior contingent at the club and is a well placed to monitor attendance and encourage the benefits of education on the club's future leaders.
2017 Senior Mens Captain Djayminy Marika is currently employed by Rio Tinto Gove Operations. Marika completed the RALPA Program and then progressed to the Dhuka Mala Training Program. This program is dedicated to providing Yolngu participants a pathway to employment in the mining sector with opportunities for full-time employment at Rio Tinto Gove Operations. This business provides housing and further benefits for its trainees and has undergone a cultural change where a Yolngu trainee within the operation is now the norm rather than the exception.
Rakrakpuy Marika is employed at Dhimurru Aboriginal Corporation. Among its functions, Dhimurru issues Recreation Permits for access to these areas, monitors compliance with access conditions, and develops culturally appropriate resource management plans. Dhimurru assists individual Yolngu land-owners, homeland centres, and local Yolngu community organisations with the development and implementation of resource management strategies on land outside the designated recreation areas.
Djarrak Football Club talented junior player BJ Mununggurr is currently attending Yirrkala School and is a valued member of the Clontarf Academy. Mununggurr recently attended the Australian School Sport Under 15's carnival with the Northern Territory side. Mununggurr has made an impact at Under 14 level through the Rirratjingu Football Program's Darwin Buffaloes and has been showing potential and dedication with his schooling.
"We address our off -field behaviours as a club. We haven't always got it right 100% of the time but we are really on a pathway to our men and women, boys and girls understanding that we are more than just about football. Its our vehicle to get better. said Rickard. He added "We have an exciting time ahead in our womens space and we intend to pilot some junior girls into the Darwin Buffaloes this season. School attendance will be a massive box for these girls to tick off and we have a sound plan to achieve success in this space moving forward".