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Inspirational teenager Elysa Oliveri named Sport Volunteer of the Year

05 December 2023

To mark International Volunteer Day, the ASC congratulates 2023 Sport Volunteer of the Year Elysa Oliveri.

Oliveri holds ASPAs trophy in front of media wall.
Oliveri was awarded the 2023 Sport Volunteer Award at the ASPAs in Melbourne.

Elysa Oliveri was awarded the prestigious title at the Australian Insititute of Sport Awards (ASPAs) on Wednesday 29 November for her volunteer work with the all-abilities Blowfly Cricket club in the Hills District of NSW.

Determined to make a positive contribution to her community, the 17-year-old gives hours of her time every week to coach, support and fundraise for all-abilities cricket.

As well as volunteering at the Blowfly Cricket club, Oliveri has coached an under 9s team at Thornleigh Cricket Club, managed a school fundraising event for the NSW Blind Cricket team and the McGrath Foundation, and organised the official opening of the Pennant Hills High School cricket nets. All while completing Year 11!

“I love that the ASPAs is getting the volunteers, and everyone who does the work behind the scenes involved,” Oliveri said.

“It’s not just about the athletes, it is also about the people who work endless hours volunteering. I’m really happy everyone can be in the same room together to celebrate sport in Australia.”

Cricket Australia nominated Oliveri, noting that she is passionate and committed, and embodies all the values of cricket and is an inspiration for other young volunteers.

The ASPAs, hosted by Paralympian Ellie Cole and Olympian Matt Denny, celebrated the best and brightest across both able and para sport. Australian Sports Commission Chair, Josephine Sukkar AM presented the award to Oliveri and highlighted the importance of recognising volunteers alongside some of Australia’s best high-performance sport stars.

“The 3 million Australians who volunteer in sport are central to our sporting nation,” Ms Sukkar said.

“Sport stands on the shoulders of those whose commitment to sport is demonstrated through volunteering. Together, the sector can celebrate all that volunteers bring to sport, attract more volunteers, better support the ones we have and deliver fulfilling and inspired experiences.”

Congratulations to all of the Sport Volunteer of the Year award finalists who were in attendance on the night, including:

  • Nicole Mitchell, nominated by Football Australia, who works tirelessly to champion participation numbers and fundraise for her football community. When most volunteers stop, Nicole keeps working.
  • Cally Bauman, nominated by Special Olympics Melbourne, has made it her mission to improve the lives of people living with a disability, working endlessly to create opportunities for involvement in Special Olympics.
  • Jennifer Kenny, nominated by Surf Life Saving Australia, is an outstanding volunteer who deserves respect for the staggering amount of work and her dedication across her 40-year association with Surf Life Saving in Australia.

For more information about sport volunteering in Australia, including useful resources to support community volunteers in sport, visit our Volunteering page.

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