Celtic’s charitable roots is something our fanbase holds very dear. The message of Brother Walfrid lives in all of us today and isnpires as we go about our lives. Celtic is a club open to all, a club thats reach is far and wide throughout the world. Another great example of this comes from the newly founded Celtic Ausralis Football Club. One of the bhoys involved with the football club was gracious enough to give us an insight into why the club came to be, what they are about and how you can get involved.

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There is a well-established bar in Perth Western Australia that lies just north of the hip and happening centre of Leederville called The Paddington Ale House; a place where indiscrete stag parties can drink their way around the World to join the ‘141 Hall of Fame’; where sports fans can rock up as early as 9am to watch a UFC fight (international time zones can be extremely unkind to your average Aussie MMA enthusiast); and where locals can partake in cuisine that does not necessarily involve shrimps or barbies.

It was here that a few of the guys used to meet at the back end of 2013 after a wee Sunday morning kick-about to chat about the football and discuss over a pint of the local brew any topic that came to mind. As the hot antipodean summer months rolled on and the numbers for our indoor five sided game turned from a relative trickle to a burgeoning list of thirty odd guys fancying a run around, the attention soon turned to whether or not there was an opportunity to run a full sided amateur team that could play in the local leagues.

12Fast-forward to now and the Celtic Australis Football Club has been building since officially being formed on Thursday 10th April 2014. We found a place to train and play at the magnificent INTIGA Stadium; home to Inglewood United and Perth Glory NPL teams. We managed to pool some money together between the twenty-one strong group of players to buy training and matchday equipment and have just secured our first sponsor; Perth Migration Agent. Our social media presence has grown as well with a shiny new website (designed by our player Mark McGeehan’s Equilibrium company), a Twitter feed, a Facebook page, an Instagram account and we even have a ClubShop with ‘OzCelts’ merchandise. We also have an eight-man committee, opened a Club bank account and have plans to incorporate as a company before the end of the year.

The Club is not just about establishing a decent hooped football team either, we are also very aware of Celtic’s traditional links to charitable causes and have setup links to the local foodbank; promising that 10% of all our future sponsorship and fundraising efforts will go towards helping the poor and needy of WA. So far we have raised $383 for Foodbank WA and plan to organise a Club food drive over the coming months. We also donate 15% of any profit we get from the ClubShop (they do international shipping) to the KANO Foundation. So far, we have managed to raise $37 for them, but as the club grows and sales increase, so will the amount we can send across to their worthwhile efforts in Glasgow and further afield. One of the guiding principles of the club is to strengthen our links to charity and hopefully representing the best of the Celtic community in Australia and Worldwide.11

Since the dying embers of last year and into this we have come quite a distance. Plans are already underway for next year with the prospect of amalgamating with another Celtic-minded team, the real possibility of having our own Reserve with four pitches and a fully-licensed Clubhouse. There has been contact with new coaches, players and sponsors as well. It’s full steam ahead. The future is bright, the future is green and gold.

If you are in Perth or know of anyone who is, we are always looking for people to get involved and help grow the club. We are open to all regardless of age, sex, race, religion or disability. Please contact us at ozcelts@gmail.com or follow us across our various platforms:

Website
https://ozcelts.squarespace.com
Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/ozcelts
Twitter (#OzCelts)
https://twitter.com/OzCelts
Instragram
https://instagram.com/ozcelts
ClubShop
http://clubshop.net.au/ozcelts/

Paul Kelly

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