Contributed by: Jake Anson Thursday, September 29 2005 @ 05:47 am ACST
Melbourne Football Club players and officials have commenced post-season volunteer work on the Thai island of Koh Phi Phi, where they are constructing a school as a memorial to former teammate Troy Broadbridge. Troy was tragically killed in the Boxing Day tsunami last December.
Broadbridge was honeymooning on Koh Phi Phi with wife Trisha when the tsunami ravaged the popular tourist destination. Troy's death devastated his family and club, just as the natural disaster devastated many South-East Asian communities. Most of Koh Phi Phi's infrastructure is yet to be reconstructed nine months following the tragedy.
Efforts by Trisha and the Demons during the 2005 season led to the formation of the Reach Broadbridge Fund. The purpose of the foundation is to raise money for the reconstruction of infrastructure on Koh Phi Phi, and the Demons have abandoned traditional post-season celebrations to build the Broadbridge Education Centre, which replaces a local primary school destroyed in the tsunami.
Almost 40 club players and officials are currently on Koh Phi Phi to physically build the centre, after collectively raising $250,000 in funds for the foundation. They also have provided books and education supplies for other schools on the island, and have held football clinics with local children.
Demons captain David Neitz said it is an honour to be involved in the project.
"We want to complete a meaningful project in Thailand as part of our healing process and to honour our great mate Broady," he said.
worldfootynews.com congratulates Melbourne FC on their efforts in Thailand, and hopes for the swift recovery of all areas affected by recent natural disasters. Anybody wishing to donate to the Reach Broadbridge Fund can do so via the Reach website[*1] .