Fostering future talent

Next week Stuart, Sam and I head to the UK, with one of the reasons for the trip being the launch of the latest Epic Good activity, the newly created Giles Foster Scholarship.  You can read much more about that here, but given I’m not exactly renowned for my passion for cricket I wanted to share some of the background as to why this is an important project for me – I don’t think it’s too difficult to join the dots as to why it’s one Stuart and Sam are super keen on!

I’ve often spoken about my belief in changing your environment to change your thinking, and while that can be as simple as leaving your desk and going for a walk down by the Brisbane River, or changing the location of a team meeting from an office meeting room to a nearby coffee shop,  travel is surely the ultimate way to do so.   When Stuart finished his pharmacy degree, his cricket skills gave him the opportunity to pack his bags and head for the UK, and we are both sure that the time he spent there played a fundamental role in him developing into the person he is today.

Unsurprisingly, I had no international sporting organisations requesting my presence at the completion of my degree, so got on with finding a job and carving out a career in pharmacy.  I had vague aspirations to travel, but my life followed a different path (I’ve written more about that here) and it was only later that I had the opportunity to spend time overseas.  It’s probably fair to say I’ve made up for that slower start now though, and I can definitely say that the perspective provided by those experiences has had a significant impact on my thinking and approach to life.

With society becoming increasingly global, we see the opportunity to spend time experiencing different cultures and environments as something that as many people as possible should have the chance to participate in.  We were thrilled to be approached by the clubs’ Stuart had played for in Australia and the UK about being part of delivering that opportunity to other young cricketers, and the Giles Foster Scholarship is the result of those discussions.

While in the UK Stuart will have the opportunity not only to relive all of his past cricket glories with his old team mates, but will also be donning the whites for the first time in quite a while, leading the GFS Invitational XI as they take the field against Great Preston in an exhibition game.  We’re really excited to be catching up with many friends from that part of the world, and having Sam with us to share in the experience and see the opportunities that his own love for cricket may create.  I’ll definitely be making an exception to the ‘cricket watching is non-compulsory’ rule negotiated after that infamous first cricket spectator experience at Punt Rd, and promise I won’t even bring my laptop to the ground this time!

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