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Athletes set to be unleashed in Queensland schools

14 September 2018

Queensland’s primary school students are set to be inspired and motivated by the State’s elite athletes through the $1.34 million Olympics Unleashed program.

Mark Bailey, Member for Miller joined students from Yeronga State School this morning to welcome Olympic and Paralympic medallists Mark Knowles and Monique Murphy to their school, alongside Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni.

Mr Bailey said Queensland Olympians, Paralympians and those aspiring to compete at Tokyo 2020 would visit school students between grades four to six, right around the State.

 "Under the Olympics Unleashed program, school children will experience the Olympic spirit and passion for sport and active recreation," Mr Bailey said.

"Registered athletes have already completed their training and are ready to hit the ground running at the beginning of Term 4, encouraging students to ‘be their best’ in sport and active recreation.

"They aim to bring out the ‘Olympic Spirit’ in all students to pursue their passion, whether that’s in sport, the classroom, the playground or at home.

"They will incorporate the Olympic values of friendship, respect, and excellence and students have the chance to ask questions, get photos and an autographed athlete card to take home."

AOC Chief Executive Officer Matt Carroll said Olympians have unique stories of hard work, goal-setting and resilience.

"Getting face to face in Queensland classrooms makes the athletes and their journeys relatable and will help inspire schoolkids in a fun and engaging way," Mr Carroll said.

"The program is only possible through the partnership with the Queensland Government.

"We thank and congratulate Minister de Brenni for his foresight and support in backing Olympics Unleashed.

"We look forward to seeing Olympians sharing their story to help schoolkids overcome challenges and go after their own personal best.

"The AOC is proud of the response from the Olympians to embrace the opportunity to connect with young Queenslanders to promote active, healthy and fulfilling lives."

"I also want to thank the Queensland Olympic Council who have been instrumental in driving and rolling out this program."

Minister for Sport, Mick de Brenni, said the Palaszczuk Government was committed to levelling the playing field and giving every Queensland kid the same opportunities.

"Our state is home to countless Olympic and Paralympic heroes - athletes like Mark and Monique all had to start somewhere, so who knows what we could inspire right here," Mr de Brenni said.

"Our partnership with the AOC is designed to inspire around 150,000 Queensland kids in the lead up to Tokyo 2020."

Mr de Brenni said he had approved a Queensland Academy of Sport (QAS) allocation of $940,000 over two years, complementing the AOC’s investment of $400,000 over two years towards the program.

"I’m happy our government has landed this joint venture between the AOC and the QAS that will deliver a partnership to create opportunity for Queenslanders," he said.

"This year we will build on the success of last year’s program where 57 Queensland athletes visited 438 schools, helping to educate and inspire more than 80,000 students.

Mr de Brenni said the Queensland Government released its Sport and Active Recreation Strategy 2019–2029 discussion paper in July.

"Queenslanders expect to have a say in how our government invests their money, and that absolutely holds true for how we invest in sport," Mr de Brenni said.

"So I’ve made available and opportunity for Queenslanders to have their say online, to participate in surveys at local sporting events or to attend one of the consultation sessions being held across the State."

Primary schools can register for an Olympics Unleashed visit.

To have your say in the development of the Queensland Active Sport and Recreation Strategy, please visit or search ‘Queensland Sport and Active Recreation Strategy.

Last updated
14 September 2018