Greyhound Racing Victoria’s TAB Great Chase and Red Dog/Blue Dog initiatives have won this year’s Community Clubs Victoria (CCV) awards for best Social Inclusion Club.
The awards, held virtually on Monday night, recognise community contributions. Normally an annual event, the awards were postponed last year because of COVID-19, with this year’s awards recognising contributions over two years.
Community Clubs Victoria is an industry association representing Victorian not-for-profit community clubs which range in size from small, volunteer-based sporting clubs to multi-million-dollar organisations.
GRV was selected under the Best Social Inclusion Club for its TAB Great Chase event and Go the Red Dog & Go the Blue Dog campaigns. Under the red and blue dog programs GRV donated $250 to designated charities every time a greyhound won a race wearing the red number one or blue number four rug respectively.
First run in 2003, the TAB Great Chase community program has gone from strength to strength and continues to support many organisations within the disability sector in regional and metropolitan Victoria. Built around social inclusion – whether hosting groups at the races or, during Covid times, over a Zoom platform – the Great Chase has seen more than $700,000 donated to Victoria’s disability sector over the past 19 years.
The devastating bushfires of 2019/20 affected many communities that are home to greyhound clubs and trainers, which led to the introduction of GRV’s Go the Red Dog initiative. The total number of red number one winners across the two-month period of the campaign was 382, raising $95,500, with the GRV Board rounding up the total to $100,000.
After the tragic accident that claimed the lives of four police officers on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway in 2020, GRV decided to donate $250 to the Police Legacy Remembrance Fund every time a greyhound wearing the blue number four rug won a race at The Meadows and Sandown Park during May 2020. The Go the Blue Dog initiative saw GRV donate $6,000 to the Police Legacy Remembrance Fund, which has been specifically created for the families of fallen police officers.
GRV wasn’t the only greyhound racing organisation recognised at Monday’s CCV awards.
Metropolitan clubs Sandown and The Meadows combined to win the Metro Club of the Year through its Greyhounds Entertainment facility located at the Sandown Greyhound Racing Club.
Sale and District Greyhound Club was also recognised with Peter Johnston the runner-up in the Club Manager of the Year award, while the Sandown Greyhound Racing Club was runner up in the Best Club Community Involvement award for its fundraising efforts for local charities, which culminated in a celebration at the 2019 TAB Melbourne Cup.
Greyhound racing’s CCV 2019/20 award recipients:
Social Inclusion award: GRV (winner) – TAB Great Chase, Go the Red Dog & Go the Blue Dog
Best Metro Club of the Year: Sandown/The Meadows (winner) – Greyhounds Entertainment venue
Club Manager of the Year: Peter Johnston (runner-up) – Sale & District Greyhound Racing Club
Best Club Community Involvement: Sandown GRC (runner-up) – 2019 TAB Melbourne Cup
2019 TAB Melbourne Cup night had great community involvement.
Sale Greyhound Racing Club Manager, Peter Johnston.
About the Community Clubs Victoria awards:
Community Clubs Victoria (CCV) member clubs are not-for-profit entities designed to provide facilities, support and entertainment for their communities. Every year CCV members are invited to be nominated in categories for their annual awards. The awards are designed to recognise the high-performing individuals and clubs whose efforts contribute to the social and economic wellbeing of their local communities.
Read more about CCV HERE
*This article was written by Tony Homfray.
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