The ASGA / Visual Connections Golf Day is set to become a popular fixture on the NSW sign and print industry calendar, with the inaugural event delivering an enjoyable blend of networking and friendly competition, as well as raising more than $900 for the Man Anchor charity.
They’re a hardy lot in the sign, display and print industry, and none more so than the 68 enthusiastic golfers who braved the dark and cold of an autumn morning in Sydney recently for the first annual NSW sign industry Golf Day.
Hosted by the Australian Sign & Graphics Association (ASGA) and supplier association Visual Connections, the day started with welcome hot coffee and egg and bacon burgers, while watching the sun rise over the Ryde Parramatta Golf Club.
Groups hit the course at 7.30am for a round of Ambrose golf – a team competition where players work together to achieve the best score for each hole. Competition for the champions’ title was intense, with the honour eventually going to Team Ricky Richards, in a tight result over Team Pozitive. Awards were presented by prize sponsors following the game over a buffet BBQ lunch, with MC Michael Punch, general manager of ASGA.
The day’s other big winner was the Man Anchor charity, a grassroots organisation focused on issues which affect men’s health and mental well-being, which was selected as the recipient of the day’s charitable donations.
Founder Steve Gamble joined ASGA and Visual Connections members on the greens, sharing some of Man Anchor’s goals and achievements with them during the day, and was delighted to report over lunch that the generous golfers had donated more than $900 to the charity’s important work.
“One in five – that’s 20 per cent – of Australians aged between sixteen and eighty-five experience a mental illness in any year,” Gamble said. “We need to start to have the conversation as a community to let our friends and loved ones know that we are there to support them. With each of these conversations we chip away at the perceived stigmas and barriers that have historically held people back from reaching out for help.”
Man Anchor, he explained, has designed its #letstalk programs to engage, educate and empower the community with tools to start the conversation around mental wellness in a positive and proactive way. Ultimately, this helps remove the fear and stereotypes that isolate people, which is a key factor that leads to suicide.
“It was fantastic to be able to share our story and our work with the sign and display industry professionals, and to have such unbelievably positive feedback – it really drives us to continue on with the important work we do,” he said.
The event garnered strong support from the industry, with a principal sponsorship from Ball & Doggett; a stocked drink cart provided by Graphic Art Mart; lunch wine by Pozitive; and novelty hole sponsorships from companies including Gravotech, Sign Manufacturers’ Insurance Brokers, Rowmark Australia, Ricky Richards, Ladbrokes, Bounce LED, Roland, Trotec, and Hexis. Others including EcoLease, Rowmark Australia, Display Systems, and Newton Visual Solutions sponsored individual holes.
Sign industry stalwarts in Queensland will have their chance to compete – and to support Man Anchor – when the ASGA / Visual Connections Queensland Golf Day tees off on 23 August at North Lakes.
Man Anchor, together with Share the Dignity, a charity which provides support to women in need, is also charity of choice for the Business@Breakfast sessions at PrintEx19, to be held in Sydney in August.