South Adelaide Football Club EST.1876

Joint major partners

Home  >  Blog  >  A Letter From the Chairman - Junior Football Development Fund
A Letter From the Chairman - Junior Football Development Fund

A Letter From the Chairman - Junior Football Development Fund

3 November 2016


Dear members and supporters,

2016 has been a particularly challenging year for the South Adelaide Football Club. On field, the Club has performed with credit. Competitiveness has been enhanced across all grades. This produced a second place finish in the Stanley H Lewis Trophy, which is the best result for South Adelaide in many years. There was greater engagement by local players from our zones and the leakage of players from the senior squad was minimal. There was palpable commitment to the Club and pride shown in wearing the Blue & White jumper for the 140th Year. The playing group has embraced the trademarks that they have developed with the assistance of Leading Teams. Regrettably, off field performance by the Club has been poor and financial constraints are now a harsh reality.

Traditional revenue streams associated with Club membership and game day attendance have declined markedly. The Licensed Venue, Jimmy Deane's, has experienced its most difficult trading year since its refurbishment in 2008. This was undertaken with a bank loan of $3.5M with the expectation of annual principal reductions. The Club's anticipated full year performance will be a loss for the third year in a row. Along with the seven other constituent clubs, South Adelaide will receive assistance from the SANFL's Land Divestment Grants distributed over coming years from the sale of land at Football Park. These funds will be used to retire debt. Budget forecasts for 2017 have necessarily been struck on the basis of significant cuts in expenditure. This will impact on the Football Department.

Over the past five years the performance of South Adelaide's junior grades has improved significantly. In 2015, and again this year, the U16s have performed extremely well and the U18s have also become competitive. The recasting of SANFL zone boundaries in 2014 handed back to the Club the traditionally strong recruiting grounds of Flagstaff Hill, Happy Valley and Sheidow Park. If properly developed, this should see our senior squads becoming more evenly balanced between local players and recruits. The need to continue to improve and grow our playing talent from within is clear, and is an established goal for the Club. This improved position in junior football has created a genuine challenge given our overall financial position.

In order for the club to be able to continue to improve and grow our playing talent from within our local recruiting zones, South Adelaide has established, via the Australian Sports Foundation, a tax deductible donation opportunity for members and supporters to directly fund the club's junior football programs. Our target is to raise $200,000 which will ensure that our junior programs will be fully funded over the next two years, during which time the Club will concentrate on working to reduce legacy debt and seeing that finances overall are re-balanced. It would be a tragedy for the Club to have to cut expenditure in the football development area which can underpin our future success.

May I earnestly request your consideration to the provision of a tax deductible donation for this purpose? Follow this link to donate to the South Adelaide Football Club Junior Development Fund

In closing, I wish to acknowledge the contribution of Dave Flanagan who died recently. Dave stepped down at last year's AGM after serving on the Board for nine years. He was a former Chairman of the Club and SANFL delegate. Dave was a passionate man who truly loved this Club. My condolences are extended to Sue and their children as well as to Dave's wide circle of friends.

A Club cannot exist for 140 years without the dedicated support of members and supporters. Please do what you can at this time of challenge and opportunity.

South Adelaide Football Club needs your assistance.

Andrew Luckhurst-Smith

About the Author:South Adelaide Football Club

SANFL Official App

Keeping up with all the latest Panthers news and info has never been easier. The new SANFL app is your one stop place for everything SANFL and South Adelaide.

Download the official SANFL App to stay in touch with the club while you're on the go, powered by REDARC Electronics.