The University of Melbourne’s elite athletes will be lacing up in orange throughout June to raise awareness about social violence in the community. An initiative of Step Back Think, the Lace Up Against Social Violence campaign aims to raise awareness about the consequences violent, split-second decisions can have on the wider community.
Student-athletes from the University’s Elite Athlete Program will be lacing up during the month of June in support of the campaign. Issac Smith (Bachelor of Science, Rowing), Dominica Maldonado (Bachelor of Arts, Taekwondo), Mary Fleming (Bachelor of Science, Orienteering), Kimberley Liew (Bachelor of Science, Basketball) and Jessie Duncan (Bachelor of Science, Hockey) laced up their shoes in orange at a recent strength and conditioning training session. Other student-athletes of the 250-plus Elite Athlete Program will lace up for their training and/or competitions throughout June.
Elite Athlete Program Coordinator Carl Junot said the campaign clearly resonated with the young men and women of the program as violent actions had unfortunately become too prevalent in society.
“We think our student-athletes are great role models for their sports. They’re leaders amongst their wider networks of family and friends, and if they can influence others to think about the Step Back Think message, then they can hopefully help change some attitudes amongst young people that violence in any form is not acceptable’, said Mr Junot.
Australian Orienteering representative Mary Fleming echoed the important need for the Lace Up Against Social Violence campaign.
“Violence on the sporting field, in the home, at a nightclub. . .wherever it may be, is just not on. I’m really proud to be supporting Step Back Think in their campaign, and hope that athletes from around Australia also support the Lace Up Against Social Violence campaign”, said Ms Fleming.
A number of Melbourne University sporting clubs are also supporting the Lace Up Against Social Violence campaign, including Cricket, Netball, Touch, Uni Blues and Rugby. For more information on the Step Back Think Lace Up Against Social Violence campaign, click here