Local sportspeople and administrators gathered at Curtin University of Technology last week for a lecture on Indigenous football.
Presented by Dr Sean Gorman, a Research Fellow from Curtin’s Centre for Aboriginal Studies, the lecture focused on his current research project dealing with young Indigenous men and how they transition in and out of the Australian Football League (AFL).
Dr Gorman said his research aimed to ensure that the industry embraced the right steps to protect their players’ welfare throughout the different stages of their career, particularly post-career.
“Many young Indigenous men whose football careers come to an unexpected end, say from injury, find themselves without a life focus, leading some to depression or unlawful behaviour,” he said.
The study — believed to be the first of its type in Australia — aims to build awareness and rapport among key parties in the football industry.
Dr Gorman’s research stems from his own experiences playing football, his knowledge of Indigenous culture and his post graduate study.
He’s the author of Brother Boys: The Story of Jim and Phillip Krakouer, which was recently adapted for theatre and came from his PhD.
The lecture was attended by Indigenous players from the West Coast Eagles, Fremantle Dockers, West Perth Football Club, Peel Thunder Football Club, and representatives from the David Wirrpanda Foundation, the WA Football Commission, the WA Cricket Association and the Department of Sport and Recreation.