This weekend, thousands of volunteers across Australia will assist in The Salvation Army’s major fundraiser of the year, The Red Shield Appeal.  Among these volunteers are a group of young athletes from the Illawarra Academy of Sport.

The Illawarra Academy of Sport provides young, talented athletes with quality training and elevated opportunities, assisting them to excel through sport. As the oldest regional academy, the Illawarra Academy of Sport has provided over 5000 scholarships and has a long list of notable alumni, including Brett Lee, Shane Lee, Luke Wilkshire, David and Emma McKeon, Sally Fitzgibbons, Josh Morris, and many more.

Shannon Fraser, General Manager of the Illawarra Academy of Sport, explained that the community generously supports the IAS, and it is therefore important for the young athletes of the sporting academy to ‘give back’.

The Illawarra Academy of Sport will assist the Salvation Army this weekend by providing young athletes to manage a collection bucket at Woolworths in Wollongong as part of the Red Shield Appeal. Mr Fraser described this as “an excellent opportunity to give back to the community”.

The Salvos say the need for funds has never been more desperate. Powerful statistics show in a typical week The Salvation Army provides 100,000 meals for the hungry, 2,000 beds for the homeless, distributes up to 8,000 food vouchers and provides refuge for 500 victims of abuse.

Karen Walker  adds, “We are truly thankful for the support of The Illawarra Academy of Sport and we would like to thank the athletes for giving up their time to assist us raise funds to help those who are struggling within the Illawarra Community.

This year’s national fundraising goal for the Red Shield Appeal doorknock is $8 million.

People may also wish to donate to the Red Shield Appeal by calling 13 SALVOS (13 72 58), online at salvos.org.au, in person at any Westpac branch or by posting a cheque to Reply Paid 87088 Silverwater NSW 2128.