The Parkside Junior Football Club officially launched their new Indigenous jumper on Sunday night at Pitcher Park in front of hundreds of players, family members and club officials.
The launch of the new jumper was accompanied by a Welcome to Country and Smoking Ceremony performed by Wurundjeri Elder Aunty Diane Kerr.
The new jumper process started in 2021 with the club engaging in a collaborative process between local Indigenous artists and Indigenous players at the club.
Indigenous artists, Tyson Austin and Troi-Saraih Ilsley, facilitated the artistic design process by engaging two of the club’s Indigenous players, Jack Ison and Mingara Clark, and leading them through a series of workshops, identifying what Parkside meant to them and how to represent that in the design.
Jack and Mingara worked with the artists to design a jumper that reflects their experience at Parkside and signifies the journey of coming up through the junior club and future transition to the senior club.
The front of the jumper represents both male and female participation and acknowledges the various roles that people play — coaches, players, parents and volunteers. The jumper recognises that people come for many reasons and from many places, identifying the club as a meeting place for all.
The back of the jumper references local geography, depicting the Yarra River meeting the Darebin Creek. It features Bunjil the eagle, the creator of the Kulin Nation.
Speaking at the event, Jack said he was proud to design the jumper with Mingara and to be able to share their culture with the club.
“Parkside is so important to us, and it was great to be able to design the new jumper for the club with my great mate Mingara.”
“It means so much to us, and it will be great to see the younger generations wearing the jumper and representing our culture.”
Jack’s Mum, Kimberley, played an important role in developing the project at the club and was thrilled with the end result.
“Our new jumpers provide a visual demonstration of Parkside’s commitment to reconciliation.”
“Changing a club’s long standing jumper design is significant and I’m so proud of the way in which our club has not only embraced but celebrated this.”
The new jumpers are reversible and will be worn by all members of the Parkside Junior Football Club in the 2023 season.