With the help of a Sunshine Coast Council Individual Development Grant, as well as his family, Lange Curr-Parkes from Buderim is about to captain the Australian Gold team in the under 21s Thailand National Boys Volleyball Championships this month.
Lange’s impressive list of achievements includes representing Queensland at the under 15s Australian Junior Volleyball Championships in 2016, representing Australia in the under 21s Thailand National Boys Volleyball Championships in 2017 and being vice-captain of the Queensland team at the under 16s Australian Volleyball Championships in 2017.
His latest trip to Thailand to train and represent Australia will run from April 12-27.
Community Portfolio Councillor Jenny McKay said Lange was a fantastic young ambassador for not only our region, but for Queensland and Australia.
“To compete for your state or country is a real honour and Lange’s passion for his sport is truly inspirational and commendable,” Cr McKay said.
“I’m proud that our Individual Development Grant program was able to provide some financial assistance to allow him to fulfil his dreams of representing Australia in Thailand.”
Lange said it meant the absolute world to him to be able to represent his state and even his country in the sport he loves.
“If you said to me three years ago I would be travelling all around Australia and to places like Thailand to play volleyball, I would not have believed you,” he said.
“But being presented with all these amazing opportunities has really opened up my perspective and it’s shown me how far hard work and dedication can get you.
“Council’s Individual Development Grant will assist with my travel expenses. I’m also interested in hearing from sponsors who are interested in supporting me in my endeavours of representing my state and Australia.”
In Lange’s Individual Development Grant application, he highlighted the importance of sharing his skill improvement from competing overseas with up and coming players on the Sunshine Coast.
“Having gained experience from such a high level really does give you a competitive edge,” he said.
“It allows for you to be able to understand the game a lot more and to do things the average player wouldn’t think of doing.
“I am eternally grateful to all those people around me who have contributed to getting me to where I am now.
“I have so many more things I want to achieve but I’m certainly on my way to doing so.
“I’d especially like to thank my school coaches Cameron Bettenay and Lindsay Baker who have both been exceptional role models to me over the past few years and have taught me so much.”
This financial year to date, council has supported 108 local individuals through the Individual Development Grants Program, providing $37,095 in funding to assist with expenses including travel, accommodation, entry and registration fees.
Individual Development Grants provide support to Sunshine Coast Local Government Area residents who are performing, competing or presenting at national or international competitions, conferences or events.
Visit council’s website for more details or to apply for an Individual Development Grant.