The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs would like to congratulate Under 20s Holden Cup player Denzel King, who was awarded the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Trainee of the Year award at the Central and Northern Sydney Training Awards.
Conducted annually by the NSW Department of Education and Communities, the NSW Training Awards recognise outstanding achievement in the vocational education and training sector.
Denzel was recognised for his outstanding contribution to the Bulldogs and NRL School 2 Work (S2W) program, in which he has been working as a trainee alongside Bulldogs Aboriginal Project Officer Dean Feeney; mentoring local Aboriginal students, and identifying career and educational paths for them.
The NRLs Learn Earn Legend S2W Program is a combined initiative of the four western Sydney Clubs - Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs, Parramatta Eels, Penrith Panthers, Wests Tigers with the guidance of DEEWR,to help create pathways to successful careers for Aboriginal students in years 11 and 12 in participating schools across Western Sydney. The aim is to support students in the program complete their senior schooling and move into further study, training, or meaningful employment.
Through the program, Denzel has been able to perform a mentoring role to local Indigenous Students, assisting them in securing post-school pathways in education and employment. He has also worked with over 200 students in the Greater Western Sydney region, spoken at school assemblies and assisted in workshops such as the NRLs Tackle Bullying campaign.
Most impressively, Denzel has been able to balance full-time work, education and volunteer work with his football career. Denzel has given countless hours of his free time to working with the local Indigenous community; attending programs including Get Black on Your Feet at Juniperina Juvenile Centre for Girls, working with local Indigenous elders, and participating in the Koori Youth Forum.
Brad Morrin, former Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldog player and Account Manager at Australian Training Company, has high praise for the young Bulldog.
Denzel is a proud Indigenous young man and is always willing to share his story and experiences in order to help other Indigenous youth reach their potential, Morrin said.
The guidance he provides and patience he demonstrates is far beyond his age and would be equivalent to someone who has experienced a working life of ten or more years let alone only one.
Denzel will now represent the Central & Northern Sydney region as one of eleven finalists in the NSW Training Awards. Congratulations and best of luck, Denzel!