The 2016 season has been another progressive year with many successes on and off the pitch and everyone needs to be congratulated.
Club membership continues to grow and the football program is going from strength to strength. We are well positioned to be the premier football club in the North East region with over 900 members.
The Nillumbik community has embraced the Redbacks with continued support by local businesses, schools, the council and Victorian State Government.
The highlights of the season for the club are as follows:
- The ongoing success of the clubs Saturday morning Spiderlings and Small Sided Games Program.
- The continued improvement in our Academy.
- Our WNPL application resulting in being ranked 10th from 22 applications.
- The appointment of a new Junior Technical Director and the restructure of the football program
- Successful campaign by both the senior women and men in the knock-out cups
- Senior men being promoted in 2016.
- The U13B, U15A and U18 Boys being crowned champions in 2016 with a number of teams becoming runners-up.
- The continued development of all the junior teams at all age groups.
- Further development of the girls program with teams in all age groups and 2 under 9 teams.
- The continued success of the over 45 league with 4 Eltham teams
Off the field the committee has worked extremely hard to uphold our place in the community with supporting the annual breast cancer and prostate cancer matches. The social activities over the year have all proven to successful with an outstanding attendance at the annual fund Trivia night fund raiser.
Local businesses have embraced the Redbacks by being sponsors of the club. This year we had 16 major sponsors donating valuable funds that were reinvested into the club for many projects. I take this opportunity to personally thank all sponsors.
The future is bright for football at Eltham with two major projects that will positively impact our club and the Nillumbik community. The redevelopment of the Eltham North precinct with new clubrooms and change facilities and the new synthetic pitch at St. Helena. Work has commenced on both projects which hopefully will be completed in the next 2 years. This will mean better and more facilities for the biggest club in the North East region of Melbourne.
The club continues to work to its priorities that have been set in the club’s Strategic Plan – namely:
- Improve the quality, depth & diversity of the football programs
- Improve club infrastructure and access to the community
- Improve club administration and communications
- Develop a vibrant social program
In 2016 the club continued to make good progress against these strategies however there is always more work to do. The committee believe firmly in a strong integrated club and that success in junior program aids the senior programs and success in the senior programs aids the junior programs.
The continued success of the club will not only be judged by the quality of the football programs that the club rolls but also how well the club is managed and that the club provides an positive family friendly environment and that everyone feels welcome which has been confirmed by the recent survey.
I am also pleased of our financial position and continued profitable however the club continues to under cost pressures in a number of areas which the committee are addressing.
This year we recognise an outstanding life members – namely Steve Ribarich. His dedication and commitment spans over a decade and is why the club is held in high esteem by many. Steve’s role on the committee and the various projects will continue to have a life-long contribution which will be applauded for many years to come.
I take this opportunity to thank all members of the 2016 Committee and without them the club would not have been the success that it was. – THANK YOU.
I also commend the commitment of the playing group and all those parents who get the players to training and to games and to those partners that are football widows or widowers during the season – THANK YOU.
A special thanks go to all the volunteers – coaches, team managers, committee, canteen staff and our duty manager. Without their support and ongoing commitment, the club would not have progressed as it has over the last 5 year.
I wish you all the best for the remainder of 2016 and I look forward to be your President in 2017.
Ivan Dalla Costa