Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues coach Brad Fittler and his Hogs For The Homeless team have completed their 2019 tour across the state with one final good deed – re-turfing the football field at Jasper Road Public School in Baulkham Hills in Sydney’s north-west today (Saturday 23 February).
Fittler was joined by True Blue Danny Buderus and Rugby League legend Ian Schubert, after the Hogs For The Homeless team rode in from Queanbeyan to finish a nine-day tour of regional NSW that took in more than 4000km and saw 5000 footballs handed out to children.
“It’s been an awesome trip and this is a great way to finish it,” Fittler said.
“The Hogs For The Homeless helps raise money for Father Chris Riley’s Youth off the Streets but we also like to help out as many other people on the way as we can.
“We have a proud tradition of re-turfing football fields and it feels great to do Jasper Road Public School. The kids will have a nice surprise waiting for them when they turn up to school on Monday.
“A lot of the boys are tired after nine days on the road and I love the fact that no one complained and just got stuck in to make it happen.”
The Hogs For the Homeless started in 2013 and has raised almost $700,000 for Father Chris Riley’s Youth off the Streets. This year’s tour started at Brookvale on February 15 and stopped at Port Macquarie, Lennox Head, Moree, Tamworth, Orange, Tumut, Wagga Wagga and Queanbeyan.
Fittler, Buderus and Schubert have been joined at various stages throughout the tour by True Blues Nathan Hindmarsh, Steve Menzies, Beau Scott and Mark Hughes, Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Origin player Kezie Apps, Rugby League Legend Nathan Blacklock and former NRL coach Neil Henry.
The tour highlights have included handing over a bus worth almost $150,000 to the Gadara School for Specific Purposes for children with special needs in Tumut, handing out football boots to Brungle Public School, which has a cohort of 13 students, as part of the NSWRL’s Blues Boot Bank initiative, taking part in Fit for Life sessions at PCYCs in Moree, Tamworth, Orange and Wagga Wagga and holding football clinics and/or functions in all of the regional areas that were visited.
“The Hogs For The Homeless is one of the highlights on my calendar every year,” Fittler said.
“All of us enjoy the trip but what makes it really special is visiting all the areas along the way and talking to the people about how they’re going. A lot of them are doing it tough and it’s a humbling experience for all of us who take part in the ride.
“I’ve really enjoyed this year’s ride and I can’t wait to go again next year.”