Paddle Australia’s Canoe Sprint and Canoe Slalom athletes have thrown their support behind Clean Up Australia Day, stepping up to clean up their local environments and support their local communities.
Clean Up Australia Day is the largest community-based environmental event in Australia, created to inspire and empower communities to clean up, fix up and conserve the environment.
The Australian Canoe Sprint team spent the day cleaning up the waterways at the National Centre of Excellence on the Gold Coast, while the Australian Canoe Slalom athletes went out on the Nepean River in the Sydney suburb of Penrith to do their part.
World Championships silver medalist Ally Clarke said she and her team mates wanted to give back to their local community by taking part.
“As athletes we are so lucky to be able to train in such beautiful waterways here on the Gold Coast,” Clarke said.
“To be involved in Clean Up Australia Day was important to us, because not only were we able to help the environment but we are also keeping it clean for the local community to be able to enjoy it as much as we do.
“It gave me such a sense of pride to see the large turn out from our Paddle Australia team, and see the teamwork that we have on the water transfer to off the water to help protect our environment,” she said.
This initiative is supported by the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) who are committed to providing opportunities for athletes to engage with and contribute back to the community.
AIS Community Engagement Officer Beki Smith said it was fantastic to have athletes joining their local community for a worthy cause.
“It was terrific to see dozens of athletes banding together to support such an important cause. It also encourages younger generations to follow suit which is great.
“This initiative forms part of our AIS Community Partnerships Program which offers athletes the chance to connect with community-based projects around the country and we encourage others to get involved.”