You are here

Setting a good example for community support in Tennant Creek

10 Jul 2013

For Jameson Casson, helping his community comes naturally. The 27-year-old from Tennant Creek has donated countless hours of his time collecting cans and bottles around Tennant Creek to raise funds for new sporting equipment for youth in his community.

Passionate about sport, Jameson volunteered much of his spare time helping out at the Anyinginyi gymnasium, run by the Anyinginyi Health Aboriginal Corporation’s Sports and Recreation Unit, before becoming an employee in 2012.

Jameson has a disability – but this has not stopped him helping his community.

Sport and Recreation Manager, Adam Drake, said his organisation took the initiative to employ Jameson after they got to know him and saw his special qualities.

“If you recognise and nurture people’s strengths you get the most out of them,” Adam said.

“We could see early on that Jameson’s helpful nature and genuine interest in the people around him would be a great asset.”

Jameson is employed to work with children and young people on sporting activities, including an after-school program, which sees 80 to 100 kids each afternoon playing games such as basketball, dodge ball, cricket and T-ball.

“In some ways Jameson’s way of thinking is one of his greatest strengths because he doesn’t overcomplicate things,” Adam said.

“He doesn’t have boundaries to how he thinks and he doesn’t let personal issues or inhibitions get in the way. He just gets out there and does it.

“To be honest, we get more out of Jameson than he gets out of us.”

Adam said his organisation has set a good example of what can be achieved by giving people a chance.

“This has definitely raised awareness amongst our community of the importance of giving people a chance to shine, and just how positive the outcomes can be.”

Jameson’s interest in his community has not gone unnoticed. On Australia Day this year he was awarded the Tennant Creek Australian of the Year Junior Award for his contributions.

More recently, he won the Arnold “Puggy” Hunter Award for his volunteering efforts at the Stronger Futures Alice 3on3, which was attended by a range of Indigenous celebrities, such as Jacinta Price and Luke Carrol, who helped promote youth leadership and the importance of getting a good education.

In addition to the excitement of rubbing shoulders with the celebrities, Jameson said he was proud to receive an award for helping out.

“I was proud that I could tell my family and friends in Tennant Creek about this achievement. I want to be a good example and role model for the young ones and the old ones in this community,” Jameson said.

Find out more

Stronger Futures in the Northern Territory is a 10-year commitment by the Australian Government to work with Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory to build strong, independent lives, where communities, families and children are safe and healthy.

Share this