Ashleigh Gardner wins Community Impact Award at Australian Cricket Awards 2024

In the world of cricket, Ashleigh Gardner is a renowned name, not only for her exceptional skills on the field but also for her off-field endeavors. The Sydney Sixers and Australia all-rounder, and proud Muruwari woman, has been making significant strides with her foundation, which focuses on providing a healthy start to the school day for Aboriginal kids.

Ashleigh Gardner with her Community Impact Award. PC: Getty
Ashleigh Gardner with her Community Impact Award. PC: Getty

 

Gardner’s philanthropic journey began in 2020 when she launched her foundation with a modest initiative in a group of schools in regional New South Wales. Since then, the impact of her work has steadily grown, reflecting her commitment to making a positive difference in the lives of Aboriginal children.

At the core of Gardner’s foundation is a mission to increase the percentage of Aboriginal kids who successfully complete their education. In an interview with The Scoop podcast during the launch of her initiative, Gardner emphasized the vital role of education in shaping the future of young minds.

“The big dream is to increase the percentage of Aboriginal kids finishing school,” Gardner stated. “I think education is the most important thing for young kids to have.”

Gardner’s Foundation has taken a holistic approach to address the challenges faced by Aboriginal children, particularly in the realm of education. One of the primary focuses is ensuring a healthy start to the school day. Recognizing the importance of nutrition in cognitive development, Gardner’s Foundation has implemented programs to provide nutritious meals to Aboriginal students, setting the stage for a productive day of learning.

The initiative started small, targeting schools in regional New South Wales, but Gardner’s dedication and passion have propelled the foundation’s growth. The positive outcomes observed in the initial phase have encouraged her to expand the reach of the program, reaching more communities and making a broader impact.

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Beyond the tangible benefits of nutrition, Gardner’s foundation also aims to create an environment that fosters a love for learning and supports the overall well-being of Aboriginal children. By collaborating with schools and communities, the foundation seeks to address various factors that may hinder educational success, including socioeconomic challenges and cultural barriers.

Ashleigh Gardner’s commitment to her foundation goes beyond the cricket field, showcasing her determination to contribute meaningfully to the community. As a proud Muruwari woman, Gardner is not only an inspiration to aspiring athletes but also a role model for those who aspire to make a positive impact on society.

In a world where athletes often become influential figures, Ashleigh Gardner stands out for using her platform to address social issues and champion the cause of education for Aboriginal children. Through her foundation, she is sowing the seeds for a brighter future, one where every Aboriginal child has the opportunity to thrive academically and beyond.

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