About 30 Australian sailors and their families recently visited Worrigee Sports, near Nowra on the NSW South Coast, to learn about the sport of bowls and the bowling community. Organised by Invictus Australia, the main organisation that looks after veteran sport, the day in mid-February involved some coaching, Rookie Rollers games for the kids and a traditional sausage sizzle.
The event is part of an ongoing partnership between Invictus Australia and Bowls Australia that creates opportunities for veterans around Australia and their families, to get involved in bowls
Regional Bowls Manager Ben Krikstolaitis, a navy veteran himself, impressed upon the servicemen and women the nature of a club as the centre of a community.
“What they found is a club that was eager to teach them how to play and just as eager to invite them into the fold,” he said.
Krikstolaitis also spoke of what being a member of a club has meant to him as an ex-sailor and how important the support of the bowls community has been in his transition away from the ADF.
At the end of the day, after a short competition between the participants, the club gained a whole group of new members and some eager playing recruits.
Krikstolaitis praised the club organisers for their work in bringing bowls to serving ADF members, and their hard work paying off, with the club signing up three new members on the day.
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