Jack Hicks, the President of the Congupna FNC, with Digga and Scott 

While most Club Presidents maybe described as stalwarts, we are not so sure this applies to Jack, the President of a great SALT Club, the Congupna Football / Netball Club. Jack is 26 years old and is in his second year as Club President.

What was the motivating reason for taking on the role? 

The game has provided me with so much joy throughout my junior years and adult life. My reasoning comes down to being the enabler for my peers and community to share similar satisfaction from the club environment at Congupna as I have had. To be identified as fit for the role by Digga and a gentleman named Mick Dwyer, who nominated me for the role, caught me off guard but set the challenge. I asked a few close people in my life, and there was outstanding support to take it on. This gave me that initial drive to internally lock in on the goal to be the best President I could be for Congupna. 

How important is the club to the local community? 

Essential for the social aspect. Congupna doesn’t even have a pub. Although not far from Shepparton, it is a social hub for the community. The residents that call Congupna home are usually longstanding. This makes our venue beloved for most, as it is a second home where their families have cherished and grown. 

The club recently ran a mental health session with SALT. Why do you think sessions like these are important in grassroots sports clubs? 

We have a wealth of caring relationships in clubs, but some of us don’t have the tools to assist our mates or ourselves in periods of mental tribulation. Scott provided coaching around awareness and how to tackle these particular issues. The SALT program is not a forced guideline, and if our people who attended incorporated some of the practices into their standard life approach, our community’s welfare would be enhanced. Of course, individuals’ welfare comes first, but if you were to focus on sport, athletes also perform better when mentally free. So, these sessions are crucial for sporting clubs of all levels. 

Anything else you’d like to share? 

I wish to acknowledge the Netball wing of our club. Although the on-court results have not improved greatly, they are conducting their approach to training and games professionally. They have been massive contributors to the club and there is seemingly no divide between the codes. Gender equality at our club has significantly been enhanced at our club as a result and we hold this as a key to club success. 

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