One of the greatest pleasures of working in Australian sports is meeting people who have a similar passion for making a difference in the community.
SCA National Director Cameron Butler said recently, “As chaplains we love to make a difference in people’s lives.” “However, equally rewarding is, meeting coaches, administrators and sports leaders who understand there’s a lot more to success than just championships.”
Noting, “During my time at Melbourne Football Club I met Football Ops (Operations) Manager Chris Connolly who was sold-out on the idea of growing a great club by investing in people.” “Chris knew it took a wide array of skilled people to achieve this… and, he knew he couldn’t do it all himself.”
During Butler’s time at the club it was Connolly who approached him saying, “I want you flying with the team to spend time with the players during our travel down-time… It’s just too important.” Such was Connolly’s commitment to chaplaincy.
A couple of years outside of AFL Connolly joined with Terry Dillon owner and Managing Director of TD Solutions. A company devoted to helping local sports clubs perform equally off the field as much as on the field. With Connolly and his team looking after the coaching and skills training and advisory, and Dillon looking after business, club, administration and financial management training and advisory.
TDS approach leagues and clubs of all sports and perform a summary club-wide health check: from coaching, skills, training, fundraising, governance, financial management, hiring coaches and strategies for community care. Once done they then consult with the club leadership on ‘where to’ and ‘how to’ improve, providing them with an easy to navigate plan forward.
A key part of their successful service model has been to provide all their clients with open access to a vault of over 160 short ‘HOW TO’ VIDEOS, adding to this number daily.
Dillon noting, “Club volunteers don’t have much free time. They’re usually the ones with very little time. So we made a decision a few years ago to provide them with a set of short, to-the-point, 2-3 minute videos they can watch on the way to the club committee meeting.”
Such has been the demand for healthy club support that TDS now aid sporting associations and clubs across the country and even into the Pacific. Dillon reflecting, “Chris and I recently returned from Port Moresby and were overwhelmed with the need within sports clubs for our services.”
Terry Dillon and TDS won SCA’s 2016 Building Stronger Communities Award for the work they’ve been doing to genuinely assist sports communities become stronger and healthier. In recent times, this has also included recommending clubs consider engaging chaplains.
Cameron Butler saying, “It’s been a great pleasure working with Terry and Chris”. “We look forward to helping each other grow stronger and healthier clubs, something we’re both genuinely and passionately committed to.”
For more information on TDS see their website: www.tdcommunitysolutions.com.au