23 May 2018

Brumbies launch charity initiative to draw fans back to GIO Stadium

| Lachlan Roberts
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The Brumbies have drawn poor crowds this season. Photo: Photox – Canberra Photography Services.

The Brumbies will give $15,000 to Canberra charities if 15,000 fans turn up to GIO Stadium when the club faces the Sunwolves in a Sunday afternoon Super Rugby clash next weekend.

CEO Michael Thomson is aiming to draw 15,000 fans to the Brumbies’ next home game on 3 June as the club tries to rebuild its support after the second lowest crowd in the club’s history – 5,283 fans against the Melbourne Rebels two weeks ago.

The Brumbies announced on Wednesday afternoon that they will run a charity initiative 15 for 15, where the home side will donate a $5,000 each to Lifeline Canberra, OzHarvest and Give Me Five for Kids if they get 15,000 fans to the ground.

“We know that crowd numbers have not been where we hope them to have been, culminating in a small turnout for our game two weeks ago,” CEO Michael Thomson said.

“There are a number of reasons why this occurred, including team performance for which we take full responsibility.

“The first fall of snow on Friday and Saturday in the lead up to the game didn’t help. The challenges around Super Rugby and its structure, and the issues of Canberra Stadium all just add to the challenges we face.”

Due to SANZAAR’s draw and broadcast requirements, Sunday afternoon kickoff is a rare thing for the Brumbies and Mr Thomson said it was the perfect opportunity to bring fans back to GIO Stadium to watch the Brumbies play “one of the most entertaining teams in Super Rugby” and to support three local charities.

Alison Drower (Content Director Southern Cross Austereo), Dave Burnet (ACT Territory Manager for OzHarvest), Michael Thomson (CEO Brumbies), Carrie Leeson (Lifeline Canberra CEO) and Josh Mann-Rea (Brumbies hooker). Photo: Supplied by Brumbies Rugby.

“We have the aim of getting 15,000 fans to the ground and we will donate $15,000 to three very deserving charities,” Mr Thomson said.

“We recognise this is a challenge and to succeed we need your support, and we ask you to encourage your friends and families to do the same.

“We ask that you come out as a show of support for your team, your city and your region, and three charities which make a real difference to our community.

“The Brumbies are a community club and we always look to support organisations which support our region. We are hoping that all of Canberra and Southern NSW get behind this initiative and come out to our afternoon game on 3 June.

“We want to thank you for being part of the Brumbies family, your support is vital to us, and the game.”

ACT Territory Manager for OzHarvest, Dave Burnet, called on Canberrans to put bums on seats at GIO Stadium.

“Our team is proud to stand with the Brumbies in this call to action,” Mr. Burnet said.

“The Brumbies have stood by the Canberra community rain hail or shine, and now it’s time for Canberrans to return the favour.”

Super Rugby – Brumbies vs Sunwolves, Sunday 3 June 4:05 pm, GIO Stadium

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