Harmony Day 2019 Wrap-Up

The Fun Prevailed at Netball ACT’s Harmony Day

Etta McEwan

Harmony Day began with an African drumming and dance performance which involved team members of the Under 17’s and Under 19’s ACT National State squads, bringing smiles and laughter to all those involved. It was a precursor to a day that brought community and netball together for a celebration of our diversity.

 

While there was plenty of fun to be had, those in attendance paused to pay respect and send love and hope to the families of the Christchurch tragedy. Members of the community stood side by side in harmony and peace to remember those who were lost.

 

Following the moment of remembrance, Tumanako, a Maori community group performed musical numbers and dances ending in a spirit raising Haka.

Tumanako leader, Isaac Cotter believes that events like Netball ACT Harmony Day has the abilities to bring all of Canberra’s diverse communities closer together.

 

“It means a lot to be involved with a day like today. One it’s got sports and netball is quite common throughout New Zealand,” Cotter said.

 

“A lot of our kids come here and enjoy the day also because it is Harmony Day as well, it allows us to work together with other cultures.”

 

While the day was filled with cultural performances that spanned the globe- Latin American dances, to Tai Chi and a musical performance from the Islamic School of Canberra.

It was also filled with activities focusing on building netball skills and having fun with new friends.

 

This allowed many communities to try a new sport, like the Latin American community where netball is new.

 

Giovani Cano, a cultural event organiser from Fair Canberra viewed the day as a way to break down barriers and for people in his community to try something new.

 

“Netball in our community is something that isn’t talked about much, to be here and to see the girls in action, to play some sport and to try the sport itself and trying to get everyone involved.” Cano said.

 

“I saw some guys playing and I thought only girls played netball. So, it is really fun and the inclusion it is great to see.”

 

A popular inclusion was the NETFIT session run by former elite player Sarah Wall and current GIANTS player Kim Green. The session was a high-energy inclusion to the event, with many trying the new NETFIT program.

 

Wall and Green both expressed how proud they were to be involved in Harmony Day.

 

“I think Netball ACT is leading the way in terms of the next step, -to bring everyone together no matter what community they are from and to be proactive and have a day that actually opens the doors” Wall said.

 

“Like Sarah said we are just so proud to be a part of it and we are actually really honoured, the groups that came in today to do their performances and we were a part of that I think that was really cool,” Green said.

 

Harmony Day continued to show us, how diverse and inclusive the Netball ACT community is and that is what makes it so special.

Etta McEwan is a current media intern with Netball ACT.