SPORTS CHAPLAIN

When you invest in caring for the complete athlete – body, mind and soul – at all levels, across all codes of sport, the result is a new level of performance, on and off the field.

Doncaster Hockey Club are pleased to announce the appointment of our new Sports Chaplain: Paul White.  A sports Chaplain is non-denominational and is really just an ear.

Below is some information about Paul and a brief explanation about his role.

What is a Sports Chaplain?

For those of you who don’t know about Sports Chaplains, here is some details from Sports Chaplaincy Australia website:

“Every year, 14 million Australians participate in sport across the country. We’re a nation of athletes, and our local sporting clubs are at the heart of our communities.  The connections built within sporting teams are incredibly powerful, as players and their families grow strong relationships and support each other through the challenges and triumphs of their sporting lives.

But within these communities, sometimes difficult things happen.  And when they do, they take the responsibilities of clubs to another level.  Players face serious injuries, a beloved team member becomes sick, or a tragic loss strikes without warning.  These critical incidents take all by surprise, and they can be overwhelming to manage for everyone involved.

It’s why it’s so important to know you’re covered, with the right support measures in place to provide effective care for your  clubs’ athletes, staff and volunteers when  crisis strikes.

And it’s why Sports Chaplaincy Australia (SCA) exists – to bring another level of investment to the game. Experience shows that seeing the best possible performance involves a holistic approach to develop the complete athlete.

Mind, body and soul: sports chaplains champion the complete lives of the people in their care.”

We’re happy to introduce Paul White and below is his full bio covering:

  • Family and interests
  • Professional Career
  • Sporting Life
  • Church Life
  • Why he is a Sports Chaplain
  • Paul's approach to Chaplaincy

Meet Paul White

Paul_White.jpg

I am married with 2 children aged 11 and 9 years and live in Vermont.

Our kids attend one of the local Primary schools.  Our 11 year old is the sports star of the two (State swimming champion), while our 9 year old is high functioning ASD so IT and data and their interest.

I enjoy watching most sports, but my number one sports passion is to see the best football club in Australia win their next premiership – Go Essendon!!

Professional Career

I have a number of professional accreditations, but to keep it simple, since starting my career as an auditor with KPMG in 1993, I have spent my working life in consulting firms or organisations in the business management or accounting/assurance fields.

I currently work at Australia Post in the Risk Management team – I help the organisation develop risk management strategies and opportunities to maximise their performance and also ensure that regulatory requirements are met.

I am also a member of the Audit and Risk Management Committee for VicTrack and a Board Member and Company Secretary for Melanoma and Skin Cancer Trials Group Ltd.

My sporting life

I played football, tennis and athletics in my youth.  Today I still play tennis but most of my sports focus is now on long distance running – I compete in the Melbourne Marathon each year and train consistently to make sure that I can get through it.  I find running a great way to reflect on life, keep mentally strong, pray and wind down.

My church life

I am baptised Presbyterian, confirmed Anglican and now worship at Scots Church in Melbourne or at St. James Catholic Church in Vermont.  It’s fair to say that I am not aligned to any specific church ideology, rather, I follow Christ in any setting and believe that the church setting is not important, rather, that the community of faith and supporting each other is critical.

Why do I want to serve as Sports Chaplain?

I looked into sports chaplaincy a few years ago because I am a ‘sporty’ guy and wondered if my faith could be put to work in a sports environment.

Sporting clubs are so important to our communities.  The passion and effort that volunteers and players devote to the Club in emphasises this.  But at times, players, coaches, officials, families may find that pressure to perform on the field or pressure to get through life generally off the field, is just too high.  Particularly with young people that may not have strong support networks or maybe just need someone to talk to.

I lost a school friend of mine many years ago who committed suicide because he was cut from a football club.  I occasionally wonder what he must have been thinking and whether he had an outlet to just help with life generally.

I hope that I can be a resource that meets the needs of Doncaster Hockey Club and is viewed as a positive and supportive influence for all involved.

My approach to Chaplaincy

I think that being a ‘presence’ is the key.  I am not here to preach the Gospel.

I am not here to deal with injuries or player performance.  That’s for the coaches and staff.

Rather my aim is to be a positive and respectful presence to help the Club and all those involved discuss difficult things in a private way.  Being someone to talk to, share a problem with or pray with is so powerful and this may be just the thing to get someone through an issue or problem.  Strong clubs are full of individuals that bring different skills and fulfil different roles.  My role is to support, listen, and take some time with those that need it.

 

If you would like to make contact with Paul, please find his details here.  If you are needing a ‘safe’ person to confide in, a caring person for those in distress or help to navigate grief and loss, the Sports Chaplain will be available to chat.

 

Click here for Doncaster Hockey Club Sports Chaplain contact details.

Click here for Sports Chaplaincy Australia Information

For critical incidents the club has access to the SCA Club Care Program