If you have stumbled across Gungahlin United’s Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram accounts, then you would have seen the handiwork of Kailey Tonini. From updating friends and family of scores around the grounds, notifying teams of ground closures due to wet weather or engaging participants during the temporary suspension of football, Kailey is the hardworking volunteer behind the scene.
Kailey joined Gungahlin United in 2018 and has cemented her spot as one of the best goalkeepers in the NPLW, but it is her skills off the field that have impressed the most.
“Leanne [Shea Langdown] asked me to be a part of our social media team at the end of last year which has been a great experience,” she shared. “I have always had a passion for sharing stories and I have the skillset so I volunteered to handle social media, some photography, and any design jobs the club needs.
“There are arguments for and against social media but at the end of the day, I think it is a really important tool to communicate.”
For Kailey, the team of volunteers at Gungahlin United inspire her.
“I was at Harrison on a Saturday morning for the junior games, which was an incredibly inspiring place to be,” Kailey shared.
“I rocked up at 5:30am in the morning to take photos and I was the fourth or fifth person there. Our volunteers love the sport and they love the community so it is just a beautiful thing to see.”
Having the opportunity to work alongside Leanne has also been a huge motivation for Kailey.
“Leanne’s energy is always so positive and she always tries to see the best in every challenge or every situation,” Kailey said. “She is incredible at generating ideas, is a mile-a-minute woman who gives so much of herself, so it is incredible to work alongside her.”
Kailey’s invaluable work has not been lost on the club.
“When Kailey volunteered to revamp our socials we were beyond relieved,” Leanne said. “GUFC had been doing communications fairly well but we needed the wow factor. Kailey has given us that wow factor.”
“I’m not sure she knew what she was taking on when she first offered to extend her GUFC title from NPLW GK to include volunteering as Head of Content for a 1500+ member soccer club, but she always manages to keep us one step ahead in the social media game,” club president Neil Harlock added.
“Kailey puts in a lot of hours behind the scenes for our club. This award is so well deserved.”
Volunteering with the club has been its own reward for Kailey and she encouraged other young people to volunteer at their local club.
“I would encourage anybody, especially young people, to identify that they have skills that their club could benefit from,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be traditional skills of working in the canteen or managing a team, it could be photography, videography, or anything in the digital space.
“Our club exists because of our volunteers so I would encourage anyone that loves the game to get involved.”
Each month, members of the football community can nominate a volunteer for the Capital Chemist Volunteer of the Month Award. CLICK HERE to nominate someone at your club.