CAPTION: ANZ CEO Vishnu Mohan hands over the sponsorship cheque of $20,000 to Nadi International Airport Volleyball festival chairperson Joe Gray. Photos: ABHISHEK MAHARAJ.
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By SHALENDRA PRASAD
One of the biggest sporting events which is also involved in charitable causes was launched last Friday at the Nadi International Airport.
The ANZ Nadi International Airport Volleyball Festival which started in a humble way back in 2004 is today one of the biggest events which unite people from all walks of life during its annual tournaments.
“It all started in 2004 with twenty seven teams and last year we had a total of one hundred and seventy six teams,” tournament chairman Joe Gray said.
He said the main objective of organizing the tournament in its initial days was to bring together the workers of the airport to create goodwill relationship between stakeholders and Volleyball was chosen because it is a non-contact sport which anyone can play.
Gray said the tournament was opened up to other teams within the tourism and hospitality sector and has grown year after year.
This year’s tournament has secured a total sponsorship package of $100,000.
The tournament this year will be held at the AFL Multipurpose courts on Saturday, August 3 and so far two international teams, one from New Zealand and one from Vanuatu have also confirmed participation.
While officially launching the tournament, ANZ CEO Vishnu Mohan said the bank is proud of its association with an event of such magnitude and will continue to sponsor in future.
The theme for this year’s event is “Sowing the Bula Spirit for Unity.”
Vodafone and Fiji Airways have also co-sponsored the tournament with various other local business houses supporting the worthy cause.
According to the tournament officials, one tenth of the gate takings will go towards the Treasure Home orphanage and the committee will also support the Nadi Kaji Rugby team this year.
Last year, the organizers donated $5000 to the orphanage and the target has been doubled this year.