Professional Footballers Australia’s Co-Chief Executives Kathryn Gill and Beau Busch and Life Member Craig Foster have been appointed to the Council of newly established body, Indigenous Football Australia.

PFA partner John Moriarty Football, Australia’s most successful and longest-running Indigenous football initiative, launched Indigenous Football Australia on Tuesday; a new national body designed to help reach thousands more Indigenous children across Australia.

Busch, Gill and Foster will join Matilda and W-League player and Gumbaynggirr woman Gema Simon and Worrimi man, academic and football author, Professor John Maynard, on the IFA Council.

The Council’s role will be to assist JMF and Indigenous Football Australia with strategic guidance and direction, with a commitment to create Aboriginal-driven transformational change through football as part of the organisation’s expansion of its Closing the Gap program.

John Moriarty Football Co-Chairs and Yanyuwa man John Moriarty AM, Australia’s first Indigenous footballer selected to play for the Socceroos, and Ros Moriarty launched Indigenous Football Australia (IFA) on Tuesday, alongside a major partnership between UNICEF Australia and Moriarty Foundation. The two organisations will cooperate through global exchange, knowledge sharing and community-driven advocacy.

“IFA’s aim is to extend our platform even further to bring the benefits of John Moriarty Football to Indigenous children, families and communities right across Australia. Our partnership with UNICEF Australia will amplify our impacts exponentially,” Co-Founder and Co-Chair of JMF, John Moriarty, said.

JMF meets 11 of the 16 Closing the Gap targets and is proving to be life-changing for more than 1,500 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander girls and boys aged 2 to 16 years of age.

The initiative is currently offered in 18 different communities in the Northern Territory, Queensland and New South Wales, at a cost of just $1,300 per child per year.

IFA’s nationwide expansion will:

  • Provide over 3,600 Indigenous school-aged children each week with access to a transformational football and wellbeing program.
  • Increase JMF’s footprint from 18 to 36 remote and regional Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory, Queensland, New South Wales, South Australia, Victoria, Tasmania and Western Australia.
  • Increase JMF’s partnerships with public schools in remote and regional Indigenous communities from 15 to 42 by providing in-curriculum football sessions.
  • Create new jobs for approximately 70 Indigenous people in remote and regional communities.
  • Increase JMF’s capacity in addressing Closing the Gap targets.

In 2016 the PFA joined forces with John Moriarty Football (JMF) to further enhance the foundation’s work in engaging Indigenous Australians through football.

To mark the partnership, the PFA’s Socceroos members made a historic donation of $90,000 from their match fees from their World Cup Qualification match against Jordan.