St Eugene's Spirits socking it to poverty

St Eugene's College, Burpengary

St Eugene’s Spirits can’t wait to sock it to poverty both on and off the football pitch

AN all-girls soccer team from St Eugene’s College, Burpengary, has helped kick off Catholic Mission’s Soctober campaign across eastern Australia.

St Eugene’s Spirits were the stars of the official launch of the school-based community engagement initiative that was rolled out in dioceses including Brisbane, Cairns and Sydney.

Using the medium of the world game – soccer, Socktober encouraged students and families to help “sock it to poverty” and support the work of Catholic Mission in developing countries,

St Eugene’s Assistant Principal - Religious Education, Nathan Jacobs, said it was terrific to see the girls, who appear in Catholic Mission’s promotional video for Socktober, contributing to the community as advocates for change on such a large scale.

He said the college had thrown its support behind the campaign this year, registering through the platform.

Students created individual profiles and began raising funds to “sock it to poverty”.

A penalty shootout-style tournament will be the centrepiece of the college’s Socktober Event Day, on October 30.

Students are sponsored to score goals against a guest goalkeeper with two different styles of ball - a regular synthetic ball, and a “sockball” made from recycled materials, like makeshift footballs made by children in developing countries around the world.

Spirits captain Cailyn Waters, said a love of football unified her team and girls like them around the world who, because of poverty and oppression, could not play football.

“This season with the Spirits we kicked a lot of goals in tournaments, but now in Socktober we’re kicking goals for girls around the world,” she said.

Mr Jacobs agreed Socktober allowed the students to kick goals on and off the pitch.

“Social action and justice are central to our Oblate understanding of the person and message of Jesus Christ,” he said.

“We constantly endeavour to help our students understand the importance to respect the dignity of every person.”

Catholic Mission Brisbane diocesan director David McGovern said Socktober was more than just a fun way to raise funds.

“It’s also a powerful way of connecting young people in Australia to the reality of those who are less fortunate.”

Mr McGovern said Socktober aimed to affirm Pope Francis’ initiative of sport at the service of humanity.

“Cailyn and the girls at St Eugene’s epitomise the very essence of that initiative,” he said.

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