He's only been in town for five years but Joel Begnell's already left a lasting impression on Orange City Touch Football and in 2020, is part of Orange City Council's nominees list for the Sports Volunteer of the Year Award.
Begnell's main role within the association has been as the representative director as he's been overseeing the pathways local players take into the next level of the sport.
Volunteers don't usually put their hand up for work five years in-a-row unless they get something positive out of the experience and like Scott Holmes described his position with the Orange District Basketball Association, Begnell labelled his job at touch footy club as a rewarding one.
"Seeing the kids learn about the sport and improve their skills is something I enjoy," Begnell said.
"With that skill development comes the awards and better results for the players."
"I've had a lifetime of involvement with touch football and seeing younger players enjoy it is satisfying."
Prior to arriving in the Central West, Begnell resided in Sydney and now works during the day as a data manager at Orange Health Service Hospital.
The volunteer category he's been nominated for is a new one within the council's sports awards and Begnell backs it as an honour that should stick around.
"Absolutely it should stay," Begnell said.
"It provided people in the community with the recognition they deserve for the countless hours they put into their sports."
Touch football at Orange is fortunate to be relatively ill-affected by the COVID-19 wave and Begnell says the local competition's racking to kick-off as per programmed in 2020 but the representative commitments throughout the autumn and winter months have been hampered.
"It looks like we'll be able to start the local competition in October," Begnell said.
"With all the rep programs that are available, touch football runs pretty much all the way through the year and that's been somewhat interrupted.
"They're going to give us an update soon on the amended formats that will be in place when those programs return."
The other nominations for the volunteers category are: Dean Brus (shooting), Scott Holmes (basketball), Leo Presslaber (mountain biking) and Kristy Parrish (basketball).
"These people are much like myself... they love the sport they're involved with and their dedication and involvement has led to it improving within the community," he said.
Orange City Touch Football will have the approval to return to the field in October but President Cathy Goodlock says the under 6s and 8s on Wednesday nights that could suffer if the restrictions don't ease in time for kick-off.
"The juniors would be our biggest concern because there'd be over 500 people gathered together in the one time slot," Goodlock said.
The Orange City Council Sports Awards are set to take place later in the month.
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