When Jarrod Harbrow was just 13, his family went through an experience that would change their outlook on life and shape the person he would become.
Harbrow’s older brother, Marc, was diagnosed with leukaemia – a cancer of blood-forming tissues, hindering the body’s ability to fight infection – at 16.
For Marc, entering remission was his second chance at life and the Harbrow brothers weren’t going to waste it.
“Since then, our care factor and our appreciation for life went through the roof and we really want to help our community,” Harbrow told aflplayers.com.au as part of a partnership with lululemon for NAIDOC Week.
“We don’t need anything in return but we want to help the people that need our support.”
In 2010, the brothers established Harbrow Mentoring, a program initially designed to deliver school holidays sport sessions to young people in far north Queensland, where the Harbrows grew up.
Since its inception, Harbrow Mentoring now provides a holistic range of programs to young people living in far north Queensland and on the Gold Coast centring around mentoring, leadership and sports development.
Harbrow, who has played 258 games across a career spanning 14 years with the Western Bulldogs and Gold Coast Suns, said the work he does in the community has helped him have a better balance with football.
In recognition of NAIDOC Week and this year’s theme – Always was, always will be – the AFL Players’ Association has come together with our mindfulness partner lululemon and Harbrow to help share his journey from growing up near Cairns, understanding his culture and what he hopes to pass on to future generations to create opportunity for Australia’s youth.
NAIDOC Week celebrates the history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. This year’s theme is: Always Was, Always Will Be. The 2020 theme recognises that First Nations people have occupied and cared for Australia for over 65,000 years.
Lead image: lululemon