Ormond JFC’s home changerooms have been given a fresh start in time for the South Metro Junior Football League (SMJFL) 2021 season.
EE Gunn Reserve’s changerooms were the site for another major painting transformation by SMJFL Umpire Academy Major Partner Monarch Painting earlier in April.
Monarch Painting completed the first part of their painting transformation in February 2020 prior to Victoria’s COVID-19 lockdowns.
The second leg of the project commenced prior to the SMFJL’s 2021 season, with Monarch Painting Ambassador Mark ‘Fussy’ O’Connor leading the way.
In their application for the painting project, an Ormond JFC representative described the need to create inviting unisex changerooms to be made available for Ormond JFC’s members.
“We currently do not have a facility that allows girls to participate,” they said. “The action plan currently being worked through with council for the installation of movable internal walls to create two additional change rooms inside the existing facility.”
“If painted it would provide a much cleaner and modern atmosphere and be a more inviting area for club members to congregate.”
The EE Gunn Reserve refurbishment was completed by Glen Eira City Council in late-2019.
Ormond JFC President Michael Whitney said lockdown provided a good opportunity for the facilities to be renovated.
“What [the refurbishment] did for us was divide big, old home rooms and away rooms from two to four so we could accommodate girls changerooms, and its very important for clubs to be expanding and opening up to accommodate girls football and boys football.”
Monarch Painting returned in 2021 once the refurbishment was complete to give Ormond JFC’s home changeroom a deep clean and a fresh coat of paint.
The project was a true team effort with Monarch SMJFL Umpires, Ormond JFC players and Mr Whitney himself lending a hand.
“It’s wonderful because this is quite an old clubroom. There’s a lot of history here with a junior football club, a senior football club and a cricket club, so it gets a lot of use,” he said.
“The whole room has been painted, ceilings and walls, and added a couple of blue racing stripes representing the blue in the football club colours and also the cricket club colours,” he said.
“These rooms were in real need of an upgrade and a paint job and this week the Monarch crew … have done an amazing job.”
Mr Whitney commented on the impact the pandemic had on Ormond JFC.
“Our key word was engagement and what’s flowed on to this year is we’ve had all the kids come back, and we’ve increased the kids playing over where we were in 2019.”
Mr Whitney said the new paintjob is sure to bring a smile to the faces of Ormond JFC’s 300 players.
“We don’t feel so stuck in the past. It’s really going to mean it will give the kids a smile when they come to these changerooms,” he said.
“A bit of colour, a bit of brightness. A good feeling [and] a good energy.”
Monarch Painting Ambassador Mark ‘Fussy’ O’Connor said he used quality products to give the changerooms a professional finish.
“Not only did we have quality paint from Taubman’s, but the products we used to put the paint on was the key,” said Mr O’Connor.
“Monarch Painting’s fantastic range of professional brushes and rollers put the paint on like you wouldn’t believe,” he said.
“Even Michael the President who helped us said he couldn’t believe how good these brushes and rollers are.”
Monarch Painting Marketing Manager Michelle Wee spoke of the importance of the Renew in 2 initiative.
“It’s a nice opportunity after COVID to be able to come back and bring some love and some life back to the homerooms,” said Ms Wee.
“And again, to have a separate area for the girls is great.”
Mr O’Connor thanked the community for their support of the project.
“The perfect synergy was we had help from everybody,” said Mr O’Connor.
“The Monarch SMJFL Umpire Academy helped out, Monarch Painting’s team and the Ormond JFC kids,” he said.
“Now that we’ve seen it completed, it makes us feel good, and that’s what it’s all about. We just want to help the local community,” said Mr O’Connor.
Glen Eira City Council Mayor Margaret Esakoff and Councillor Sam Parasol joined dozens of Ormond JFC kids, the Monarch Painting team and SMJFL Chief Executive Officer Sarah Loh for the official opening of the changerooms on Friday 16 April.
Ms Esakoff addressed the Ormond JFC community at the launch.
“Thank you to Monarch Painting and the league for everything, for the joint effort that has made this possible,” said Ms Esakoff.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing the renovations that have been taking place.”