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An "all-round sweetheart" is one of many young helpers inspiring the generous community vibes to blossom at Nerang Junior Rugby League Club.

Hudson Warnes is only in under 7s but "literally does not stop" in his quest to make the club a better place, according to Roosters secretary Tania Harimate.

"This little boy is there first thing in the more asking, 'Tania, can I have a bag so I can pick up rubbish?' or 'I'll go mop the floors in the boys' room so you don't have to go in there'," she said.

"He literally does not stop. He gets angry at us if we run out of jobs for him to do."

Hudson's family moved to the area from Newcastle, joining the club this year. His twin brother Harrison plays alongside him, while mum Abrheanon-Jade Meredith is manager and coach is uncle Adam Meredith.

Hudson is not beyond chasing people up if they drop their rubbish, and has inspired a movement within his team to find 10 pieces of rubbish after training and games.

And Hudson is not the only young godsend at Nerang, with under 12s player Cash Birchyard no stranger to cleaning up, and he will ball boy "every game if given half a chance".

Cash, who has an older brother who also plays at the club, would never take a break from the junior or senior game day duties if given the choice.

Cash Birchyard
Cash Birchyard

Harimate said the young players were setting an example throughout the club.

"Certainly this year we're trying to bring back the community within the community. This is not just our club and by helping us you help out there," she said.

"A lot more people are coming on board, especially with the increase of teams this year (from 20 to 27), so there's a lot more people floating around and a lot more things to do."

Social media fuels Laidley's girls success

A campaign on Instagram and Snapchat from 12-year-old Maddy Barford has been the driving force for the Laidley Lions under 14 girls side getting under way.

It's the first year the club has been able to offer an option for girls in the general area of the rural community beyond under 13s.

Lions president Matthew Thompson had flyers sent out in pre-season and an off-season skills clinic had them just short of a team, before Maddy's efforts bumped the club up to 21 registered players.

Club secretary Mikhala Barford said seeing the mix of players - some have played since under 6s, some hadn't played since under 9s, and many hadn't played club footy at all - bond together was amazing.

"Logistically it's hard for us to join the established clubs in Ipswich and get girls to training when, in most parts, they have other siblings still at our club," she said.

"The amount of commitment and effort all of these girls have put in to create the bond and amazing playing group they have is second to none.

"The current success of the team can be put down to their hard work, a coach who lives and breathes footy and wants to see the overall girls and women's game grow, and the amazing support of the parents who get them to training and games each week."

The club is already planning to add an under 16 team for 2024 and encouraged prospective players and parents to get in touch.

Warriors' warm welcome for huge fan

Young fan Chelsea Austin has the time of her life every time she gets to watch her Capalaba Warriors girls in action, but had the ultimate highlight recently leading the team out on to the park.

Warriors president Tanya Bonney, who works with children with disabilities, said the players had been fantastic in including Chelsea in every possible way.

"Chelsea has come to a few games but gets more involved with the girls and loves watching the girls play," Bonney said.


Today we had a special player. Chelsea got to be part our girls team a big thanks to them all for including her she has...

Posted by Capalaba Warriors District Junior Rugby League Football Club on Friday, May 5, 2023

"She gets in her gear and gets very excited about going to the football. Even the little kids know who Chelsea is.

"They all give her a high-five and chat to her and definitely include her as much as they can."

Chelsea is known for her team talks and encouragement from the sideline and was in full voice after leading the team out.

"There's a photo of Chelsea in her chair looking at the girls and all the girls are standing in front of her before they went on the field, and Chelsea says, 'Okay girls, I can't kick, I can only pass'," Bonney said.

"At halftime she was among them all and she's got a hand on one of the girls' legs because she got a head knock, so Chelsea was making sure she was okay."

"Just her talking to the kids and kids talking to her, she thinks it's the best thing since sliced bread."

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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