Tickets have gone on sale today for the 2012 Harvey Norman All Stars as Indigenous, political, sporting and social leaders gathered in Brisbane to unveil the stunning impact of Rugby League-based school-to-work programmes in Indigenous communities.

In a week where the Telstra Premiership also launches its Close The Gap Indigenous Round, the year-round impact of the Harvey Norman All Stars was evidenced by an unrivalled 85% success rate in school-to-work transition programmes.

NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, Federal Minister for Sport and Indigenous Employment, the Hon. Mark Arbib, Queensland Sports Minister, the Hon Phil Reeves, ARL Indigenous Council Chairman, Mr William ‘Smiley’ Johnstone, Indigenous All Stars coach, Mr Laurie Daley, Co-Chair of the Close The Gap campaign, Mr Tom Calma, Aunty Heather Castledine, Co-Chair of Reconciliation Queensland Inc, Regional Director South East Region for the Queensland Department of Education and  Training, Mr Glen Hoppner, plus players from the Broncos, Cowboys and Titans, were among the guests unveiling the All Stars outcomes at the Queensland Museum and celebrating Rugby League’s ongoing commitment to Indigenous culture and communities in need.

Today’s gathering underlined the NRL’s ongoing commitment to supporting Indigenous communities through initiatives such as the Federal Government’s Learn. Earn Legend! Program, Regional Tours, Youth Summits, the State of Origin Job Experience, One Community Ambassadors and Australian sport’s first formal Reconciliation Action Plan.  
Monies raised through the 2011 Harvey Norman All Stars have assisted NRL Clubs in taking education, reading, mentoring, leadership, goal-setting, health and welfare programs to more than 24,000 students of all cultural backgrounds, including: 
 
The Titans Beyond Tomorrow mentoring and leadership program that involves 42 schools and boasts an 85% success rate in helping students make the transition into further education and employment;

The Broncos’ Book Club that has 5,000 members and promotes literacy and numeracy;

The Bulldogs’ Rainbow Serpent Tours that, in partnership with The Children's Hospital, Westmead, provides children with medical treatment and support;

The Cowboys’ Palm Island Obe Geia Challenge that promotes, harmony, healthy living and aims to break down barriers between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians;

The Raiders’ Tackling Indigenous Health Program that has involved 8420 students, 73 schools and produced 35,000 ‘Raider Recess’ resources delivering key health messages;

The Dragons’ mentoring and cultural awareness program delivered to more than 400 Indigenous students across 12 communities;

The 100% Knights Program targeting senior students and their families with mentoring and leadership training and assisting in the transition to further education and the workforce;

The Souths Cares Healthy Active Lifestyles program;

The Panthers On The Prowl healthy lifestyle mobile program;  

The Eels’ Blue and Gold Deadly Heart Learning Centre that has partnered with the New England Division of General Practice to improve health outcomes for 400 students;

The Warriors’ Backyard Legend and ‘Eat Well. Play Well. Stay Well’ health and nutrition programs helping more than 1,500 children in New Zealand;

Melbourne’s ‘Storming Against Violence’ initiative promoting respectful relationships and reducing violence against women and children;

Wests Tigers’ new Academy of Learning at Leumeah providing education programs aimed at closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians;

The Sharks Footy Fever education and mentoring camps setting positive goals for young men;

The Roosters’ ‘Stick With it’ program delivering healthy lifestyle messages and leadership and mentoring skills;

The Sea Eagles’ mentoring and cultural sessions and ‘Outback Meets the Beach’ program.

NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, today said Rugby League would continue to make a positive difference in both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities across the country.

“Just as the Federal Government’s apology to the Stolen Generations was more than a set of words, the Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars has always been much more than a game of football,” Mr Gallop said.

“Success rates of 85% in the work to school programmes are pretty much unheard of. It can be a life-changing statistic for the young men and women involved and it underlines the connection that Rugby League has with Indigenous communities.

“A lot of people like to talk about what can be done – this is a case of clubs getting and doing something and they are doing so in a way that reflects our core values of innovation, community spirit, opportunity, inclusiveness, pride and decency.”

This week’s Close The Gap Round highlights Rugby League’s ongoing commitment to helping reduce the tragic life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians.

It will feature the annual Reconciliation Cup between the Bulldogs and Cowboys, as well as a range of NRL Club initiatives including the Melbourne Storm launching its own Reconciliation Action Plan, clubs in Indigenous jerseys and wearing Close The Gap armbands, game-day promotions, fund-raisers and numerous community activities.

The 2012 Harvey Norman Indigenous All Stars v NRL All Stars match will be played on Saturday, February 4, at Skilled Park on the Gold Coast.  

Tickets are available through Ticketek outlets, on 132 849 or www.ticketek.com.au. New Zealand customers can call 0800 842 538 or +61 132 849.

The All Stars remains the only representative match in Australian sport in which the public selects the teams that feature the game’s leading Indigenous talent and players from each NRL club. 

“The Queensland Government is pleased to be supporting the 2012 Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars match through Events Queensland as part of a three-year agreement which brings one of the most exciting exhibition matches to the Gold Coast,” Queensland Premier and Minister for Reconstruction, the Hon Anna Bligh, said.

“This match shows us that Rugby League has the power to unite people of all communities and cultures and enrich the lives of those who take part, and I would like to congratulate the NRL for their leadership.

“This is so much more than one match, with a range of activities around the event including the Bumehla Festival, a free festival meaning ‘celebration of the people’, skills clinics and school clinics. 

“And by attracting interstate visitors – last year from as far afield as the Far Country in South Australia and the Goldfields in WA – it will also deliver a vital shot in the arm to the local tourism industry.”

All Stars Ticket Categories and Prices
Category 1
adult - $95.00
concession - $75.00
junior - $65.00
family $255.00
Category 2
adult - $65.00
concession - $50.00
junior - $40.00
family - $180.00
Category 3
adult - $35.00
concession - $30.00
junior - $25.00
family - $100.00