Buckley’s donation eases pressure on local clubs
BUCKLEY’S Entertainment Centre recently pledged a massive donation to AFL Barwon clubs to help them deal with the financial hardships caused by coronavirus.
All 34 football clubs in the Geelong Football League (GFL), Bellarine Football League (BFL), and Geelong & District Football League (GDFL) are shareholders in Buckley’s and will receive the funds within the coming weeks.
Buckley’s announced each club would receive $15,000, as well as another $15,000 for the AFL Barwon umpiring fraternity.
Buckley’s chief executive officer Michael Tonks said with football clubs presently struggling due to a lack of income he hoped the donation would help ease the pressure on them.
“The football clubs are struggling because their getting no revenue from gate takings, or bars or anything.
“They all have ongoing costs whether it’s power, insurance or gas.”
The donations from Buckley’s amount to more than $500,000.
Anglesea Football Club president Jamie Mackenzie said the donation would make a huge difference to all the recipients.
“It is amazing thing for all the clubs, particularly in these times.
“I was stunned really. It’s a great gesture and I just really appreciate from a club perspective what it means.
“It just takes the pressure off some of the things we purchased prior to the season as part of our budget. It helps us to get through this difficult period.”
Ocean Grove Football Club president Peter Smith said the funds would not only help the clubs, but also their communities.
“All clubs at the moment are struggling with the financial impact that this is having.
“It just creates some breathing space for us. It has a flow on effect to our sponsors as well, it means we don’t have to have conversations with or sponsors who are also struggling.”
Smith said this was particularly important as many of their sponsors were local businesses.