If you could clone Shane Rout, you would. The Brothers Rugby League tragic is not only a great human being, but an incredible ambassador for Down Syndrome Australia.
You see, Rout’s story goes a little deeper into just fundraising for this worthwhile charity. Shane’s grandson, Coen Campbell, was born with Down syndrome.
To say this interview won’t touch a nerve within, you would not be telling the whole truth.
‘Mate, for me this is a special cause’
The Down Syndrome Charity Cup was born in 2014 through the work of Rout, when he approached the Brisbane Second Division about a proposed charity match that would see the Brothers Opens side vie for the cup in their last home game of the year.
After two successful Down Syndrome Charity Cup games, the Brothers club welcome the Pine Holy Spirit Hornets to Gibson Park Stafford on August 13, 2016, kicking off at 3pm.
Rout’s incredible feat to get this event off the crowd was also welcomed with open arms by the Brothers club and their committee including Scott Munro, Craig Murray, Graham Brenna and Dean Cameron.
Since the cup’s inception, Rout and the Brothers club have raised an incredible $9000 to go towards the Down Syndrome Australia music program. To say this is a phenomenal success is an understatement.
Rout’s passion for this charity can be seen in his eyes. This is a man who not only cares for his grandson, but the wider Down syndrome community.
“Mate, for me this is a special cause,” he said.
“ It’s all about awareness on what Down syndrome people encounter each day and treating them equally with respect.
“I wanted to break down the barriers of how difficult it is sometimes with how these people interact with others.
“For me, they are just as normal as you and I.”
You can totally agree with those sentiments - those sort of comments come straight from the heart.
When asking Rout on how other clubs have embraced this charity match, he enthused that it was met with positivity.
“All three teams that have been drawn against us in the last round have thoroughly embraced the concept. It also adds some flavour in that you are not only raising awareness for a good cause, but also bragging rights for one of the most hotly contested cups in the Northside competition.”
“Brighton and Gaters have been successful in the It Ain’t Weak To Speak Trophy, and also other clubs including Moreton Bay Pride and Pine Rivers Bears raising awareness for Women’s breast cancer.”
The Down Syndrome Charity Cup also places emphasis on the Rout family, as the man of the match is presented with the Coen Campbell medal. This certainly makes it a little extra special for the Rout family as it ensures their grandson Coen is equally accepted within the community and his name will etched into Brothers folklore for years to come.
With gates opening at Gibson Park at 1pm, the day signifies what the Brisbane Second Division is all about - coming together as one.
Shane Rout, changing people’s lives for the better.