Eliza Parker from One Mile State Primary School loves her sport. Gympie schools have a chance to jump on board the Coles Sports for Schools program to boost their sporting supplies.
Eliza Parker from One Mile State Primary School loves her sport. Gympie schools have a chance to jump on board the Coles Sports for Schools program to boost their sporting supplies. Craig Warhurst

Schools in race for sport gear

ST PATRICK’S Primary School is one of many schools in the Gympie region eager to get stuck into the Coles Sports for Schools program launched yesterday.

The program allows registered schools the opportunity to receive thousands of dollars worth of new sporting equipment.

Schools have 10 weeks to collect vouchers by spending money at Coles that in turn can be redeemed for sporting equipment.

It is expected more than $10 million worth of sporting equipment will be handed out to schools across Australia under the scheme.

St Patricks Primary School’s Charmaine Frances is co-ordinating the school’s efforts with the program.

“We would really like some softball gloves but there is a lot of equipment that would be of great use for the school,” she said.

Frances said the students were leading the charge in collecting vouchers.

“We spoke to the kids Wednesday about the program and what it means and they are very enthusiastic,” she said.

“They like the idea of getting something new and want to get out there and start collecting.

“The great thing about this program is that anyone wanting to support the program can shop at Coles and drop the vouchers into the school. We’re more than happy to take them!”

Coles Managing Director Ian McLeod said the program, designed to coincide with the Commonwealth Games, would tackle problems such as childhood obesity.

“The fact that 30 per cent of Aussie kids do not participate in sport or any physical activities is alarming,” he said.

“We believe the more sporting equipment and activity sets the kids have access to, the more likely they are to be active.”

Supporters of a school can collect a voucher for every $10 spent at Coles Supermarkets, Coles Online, Bi-Lo and Pick’n Pay stores. The program runs from September 2 until October 31.

Vouchers collected from schools will be counted in November and December with equipment to be delivered at the start of the 2011 school year.

Taking part is easy for schools not already involved. Visit www.coles.com.au/sportsforschools and register.

Gympie Times


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