I dropped by the Rec on Sunday afternoon and saw the car park was very full. My first thought was must be a good lunch on today but I walked around the back and the tennis courts were full of people of all ages getting coaching and having a great time.
Jeannette Kamar, one of the Community Committee, and the contact person for the tennis club, has arranged for Tennis Victoria to provide free coaching and the Bendigo Tennis Association and Community have provided racquets and shoes for the community. The tennis club is the only sporting facility available in Flowerdale and the number of players has skyrocketed since the fires.
There were 38 people there for the first coaching session and a big thank you to Stephen Storer from Bendigo for his hard work in providing the coaching.
"Stephen Storer and the junior contingent at the first coaching session"
Jeannette said to me that she believes sport is a fantastic way to bring the community together and also give people a break from the hardships that they are dealing with. She sees this as an important part of the recovery process.
I spoke to a friend, who lost everything in the fires, and had never picked up a tennis racquet in her life. She said she had a fantastic time and was now a tennis convert. She had a great time and was pumped.
The vibe on the courts was great with lots of people really enjoying themselves.
A big thank you to Jeannette, Tennis Victoria and the wider tennis community who have made this happen. Another example of people in the community doing their bit to keep the spirit strong.
If you are a Flowerdalian and want to get involved drop around and have a go, the courts are open all day and racquets and balls are provided. You can also sign up for coaching, the best way is to call Jeannette on 5780 1520.