Thurston helps kids into kindy
WHAT he’s done for rugby league is just the start as Johnathan Thurston yesterday turned his attention towards his off- field passions.
Just hours after an emotional State of Origin series win watched from the coaches’ box, Thurston became the ambassador for Deadly Kindies – a $ 1.5 million plan to boost the number of enrolled indigenous kids by combining health checks with kindy packs.
Now “at peace” with his decision to retire from representative football, he said it was time to start his transition to other pursuits with an emphasis on social change. With rates of indigenous kids enrolled in kindy at 65 per cent in some parts of Queensland, organisers say Thurston’s support would see numbers skyrocket to the 95 per cent target.
“I am in a very privileged position with what I do and want to be able to use that position to make social change,” Thurston said. “Obviously, the career is coming to an end and I am passionate about education and … health and making sure the next generation of our culture are getting the best access to education and health.”
Meeting awe- struck kids at Koobara Kindy in Brisbane, Thurston ( pictured) said the next six months would be “pretty tough” as he focused on mending his shoulder.
But that meant more family time and a chance to plan his post- football career. “I’ll start putting things in place for when I do retire which is why I’m standing here today as an ambassador,” he said.
Origin fallout: Sport
TOUGH ROAD: Tina and Levi Morse with son Orlando, 3. TINA MORSE