I table this report knowing that this year, as promised, we have been able to achieve most of our expectations. The football department has stabilised and we have been diligent off field to be able to remain in Division three, safe in the knowledge that we plan to be a genuine force in 2019.
2018 was the first year of a three year plan that Vice President Stephen Dunn and I set about delivering and I’m happy to report that we are on track through our steadfast belief and an unwavering determination, no matter what the distractions.

It’s easy to forget that just over a year ago the football department was in damage control. We had farewelled the past coach in challenging conditions and signed a new head and assistant coach with unknown player numbers and commitment. We were determined to reinstate an under 19’s team but had received little or no interest in filling the coaching position and we were actively attempting to recruit under 19’s players. This coupled with genuine dialogue from opposition teams actively corresponding with our players made for an extremely eventful pre-season. The selection of Luke Dunn as the 2018 Colts coach has smoothed the transition from Colts to Under 19’s and he is to be congratulated on the appointment.

We also farewelled 6 senior players including our best and fairest which again made for an interesting start to our 2018 campaign. The 2018 season has seen all teams field competitive and committed players and all concerned should be very proud of our playing group, no matter what the on field result. It also pleases me that the current group of coaches and players have the club at heart and understand their responsibilities for maintaining a supportive and sustainable club.

Off field has continued to flourish through the dedication of the executive and general committee and everyone should be very proud of our off field results and it is only through their continued resolve that we post a healthy profit. This result will hopefully be coupled with a similar performance in the years to come so that we can achieve our goal of first class LED oval lighting that will enable us to play night football for premiership points.

This year has seen the continued success and growth of numerous essential functions. The Presidents Lunch and Ladies Lunch were again well attended and we saw the reintroduction of the Players Ball which was a huge success. The Presentation Night was returned to the club rooms and was also seen as a great initiative. The Past Players Lunch continues to remain a concern as small numbers were again present. There will have to be genuine attempts to fix this and stimulate attendance. Club membership remains static and 2019 will see a renewed focus on increasing this critical portfolio.

Sponsorship was again outstanding and Jackie continues to promote and manage this essential portfolio with enthusiasm and professionalism. Vice President Stephen has been my constant ear and sounding board and I simply couldn’t do this job alone without his support and assistance. Treasurer Jeff and Secretary Joan have again been extremely professional and to know that we are all ‘on the same page’ is very comforting. Thursday night meals were again a huge success, not only in dollar value, but the nights also perform an essential social role that can easily be understated. Thank you Terry, Lisa and your wonderful assistants. All other committee members should be very proud of your 2018 achievements and I thank them for their input.

In closing, it is apparent from dialogue with other Presidents that there is a very fragile line surrounding most football clubs these days. It is extremely easy for clubs to slide into financial and cultural oblivion without dedicated volunteers and players that understand that football clubs are not a bottomless pit of money which miraculously appears from the sky. A continued focus on reducing food waste, unnecessary expenditure on consumables ( lost footballs , tape etc ) and an ownership of responsibilities should be paramount to all. Everyone must take responsibility for actions and outcomes and be mindful of the affect that they have on others.

The overall health and sustainability of the Warrandyte Football Club remains my sole focus and 2018 has been successful and pleasing on a number of key criteria and I look forward to 2019 with optimism. The senior coaches are actively recruiting players for 2019 to fill gaps in our development and playing list. They are speaking to a number of individuals in the hope that they share our passion about our culture and belief in a strong community club. Stay tuned for some exciting news soon!

Thank you for your support and faith.

Peter Hookey

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