Australian rock band Grinspoon’s front-man Phil Jamieson rocked the official launch for the 2016 Hogs For The Homeless Tour on Thursday night as NSW True Blues legends including Brad Fittler and Steve Menzies joined the party.
“This is our fourth year, we get around Country NSW and do 30-40 school visits,” said Fittler.
“It’s something I’m so glad we started and I hope it goes on for as long as I can ride.”
Preparing to embark on the three-week journey, traveling more than 3,500km, the Hogs for Homeless crew – consisting of NSW Origin representatives Matt Cooper, Josh Perry, Steve Roach and Ian Schubert – assembled at the sold out event at Terrey Hills Tavern before starting this Monday, 15 February.
“You have moments sometimes when you ride into a school or when you’re taking a nice big sweeping bend and you see all the bikes in front of you, it’s just awesome to be a part of.
“You have great times when you sit in a country pub and you’ve had a big day and feel like you’ve done a lot of good.
“They (country towns) are going through droughts and just because you’re not hearing about the drought and it’s not the subject at the moment, it doesn’t mean lots of people out there aren’t struggling – towns are struggling big time.
“Putting a smile on their faces is definitely the best part of the trip.”
Making stops in 17 country towns from Oberon to Cessnock, the crew will run Rugby League clinics across schools and local Rugby League clubs for about 3,000 children.
Since its inception in 2013, Hogs For The Homeless has raised $300,000 for Youth Off the Streets, with this year’s tour also helping to raise much-needed funds for Rugby League clubs as well as to drive Junior Rugby League registration and participation.
“We’ve raised over $300,000 and I feel like it’s getting better.
“It’s always nice to give more money, it’s wonderful in the end to come and give a bigger cheque.
“The biggest benefit from my point of view is going out to those areas, seeing what’s happening and mucking around with the kids.
“We give every kid a footy which is awesome and there’s a lot of benefits in what we do.”
To support the Hogs For the Homeless tour efforts to raise money for Youth off the Streets, click here.