Friday 10 September 2021

The NSWRL is pleased to announce that Theresa Tasaico from the Southern Sydney Region has been named the NSWRL Gordon Lowrie Volunteer of the Year winner for her tireless work in re-starting a club in the St George District to help revitalise Rugby League in the area.

Tasaico was chosen from a pool of 11 Regional Volunteer of the Year winners and has been awarded a gift pack that includes a Brydens Lawyers NSW Blues jersey. She has also been nominated for the NRL Community Volunteer of the Year which will be awarded before the NRL Grand Final.

“Volunteers are the lifeblood of our game and Theresa is a perfect example of that,” NSWRL Head of Football Robert Lowrie said.

“She has devoted countless hours to starting up the Riverwood Legion JRLFC and taken on a number of significant roles to advance female participation in the St George District.

“The NSWRL congratulates Theresa and all our other volunteer award winners for their contribution to the growth of Rugby League and the sacrifices they make along the way.”

Tasaico and her husband Daniel were sounded out at the end of 2017 to help restart a club in the St George District for seniors and juniors that had been dormant for several years.

That led to the rebirth of Riverwood Legion JRLFC, which has history stemming back 31 years before becoming inactive, with Tasaico starting off with three teams.

Now in 2021, the club has nine teams and Tasaico is the Riverwood Legion JRLFC Club Secretary and Vice-President for St George Junior Rugby League Football District.

She also holds other roles including the Team Manager for St George Junior League Development Squads, Tonga NSW Harmony Cup Squad, NSWRL Girls Under 16s Harmony Cup sides, St George Girls Under 15s Monarch Blues Tag League, St George Lisa Fiaola Girls Under 16s, and the St George Dragons Harvey Norman Tarsha Gale Cup Side, who won the Premiership this season.

“I got into it because of my boys Reilly and Joshua,” Tasaico said.

“The club is growing. I have a great team of strong women and men around me. It all makes it worthwhile when you the see the little ones play – they are so cute, and they love it.

“The camaraderie between them, and running around with their mates, it’s just great.

“I love it, but it’s been hard with COVID-19 because I’ve actually got free time on my hands now – I’m asking myself ‘What should I be doing?’

St George JRLFD President Gary Faafua said he had no hesitation in nominating Tasaico for the award after seeing firsthand how hard she works every season.

“Rugby League is still a big part of Theresa’s life,” Faafua said.

“If you ask her, she will say her reward is the kids smiles. Inclusiveness, positivity, unity, discipline and respect, are only a few words that can describe what she has brought and continues to bring to rugby league over the last 10 years.

“(She is) always helpful, always determined, always positive.”

The NSWRL has now announced all Volunteer of the Year Award winners including the Grassroots Club of the Year, Inclusive Volunteer of the Year, the Indigenous Volunteer of the Year, Community Coach of the Year (Male), Community Coach of the Year (Female) and Regional Volunteers of the Year.