‘Changing the Score’: An Australia-Brazil Sport for Reconciliation Journey October 2013
An end of season trip with a difference; it’s with plenty of excitement and a degree of trepidation that the players from the Richmond Football Club and participants of Melbourne’s Korin Gamadji Institute step into the Bluestone Edge and RMIT Rio project ‘Changing the Score’. Day one in this amazing city, Changing the Score partnership and Dylan Grimes talk about their expectations and hopes for the project; how can sport provide a lens through which they can deepen their understanding of culture, leadership, indigenous reconciliation & social inclusion, thousands of miles from Punt Rd oval?
Day 2 in Rio, the travelling Tigers discover music and dance is as significant to the Brazilian identity as football. Changing the Score partnership and Dan Jackson discover what the Samba means to a community and what can be drawn from this experience. How do people represent and recognise their cultural identity? And does being a good footballer make you a good dancer?
Changing the Score Day 3, the favelas; a beautiful, powerful and connected experience for Changing the Score partnership and the Tigers in Rio. Exchange is as much about what you learn as what you give. Matt Dea shows a deep sense of understanding of the privilege associated with the opportunity to communicate. To witness leadership, feel responsibility and discover integrity where you imagine none at all. Come on this special journey.
Changing the Score Day 4: A ‘blockbuster’ on the beach at Rio – Brazil vs Australia, IBISS kids vs Tigers, soccer vs AFL. Within diverse cultures, Changing the Score partnership and Alex Rance delight in the capacity for respect and mutual understanding. Sport may not be the answer to social inclusion, but it’s not a bad starting point to coming together and finding common ground
Changing the Score is a partnership between Bluestone Edge, RMIT and IBISS, an organisation committed to social and inclusion and the fostering of everyday to basic human rights for disadvantaged people. Day 5 in Rio, the Richmond players visit the Luta pela Paz boxing academy, translated it means Fighting for Peace. These complex communities are characterised by survival and resilience. You fight to keep going, fight for self respect and fight until you find someone willing to give you a chance.
In a Bluestone diary detour, guest host Belinda Duarte, the Director of the Korin Gamadji Institute with Richmond Football Club reflects on the impact that sport has in disadvantaged communities. Laguntas participants, Derek Hayes and Darren Allen, describe the fear and elation they experienced in sharing the war cry in front of the group.
Discoveries and fond memories from the final day of the Changing the Score partnership; Dan Jackson and David Astbury reflect on life changing Rio, their pride on being part of the Richmond Football Club and how a little bit can make a big difference. Thank you for being part of this amazing journey.