Fitting Farewell as Knight Calls Day
Basketball Federation of Papua New Guinea (BFPNG) Special Projects Coordinator Steven Knight is headed back home to Australia.
Knight, who works as a Sergeant with the Australian Federal Police, Papua New Guinea Australian Policing Partnership (PNG-APP), recently completed a 27-month mission based in Port Moresby.
Sergeant Knight worked in community policing at Gordons, Gerehu & Waigani, before moving into APEC planning. During his service, he developed a strong connection with the BFPNG basketball family, adopting the position of Special Projects Coordinator, a volunteer role in which he served for over a year.
“My interest in helping PNG Basketball all stemmed from the 2015 Pacific Games,” Knight recalled.
“I was assisting with games security at the Taurama Aquatic and Indoor Centre during that period and that’s where I met (FIBA Oceania Executive Director) David Crocker.”
“I talked with David and expressed my interest in helping grow the sport as a volunteer, outside of my Australian Federal Police work commitments.”
“It wasn’t until March that I met with then newly appointed BFPNG Chief Executive Officer Joel Khalu and discussed with him some of the outcomes that could be achieved by working collaboratively,” Knight said.
Following that initial conversation with Khalu, Knight devised a Project Initiation Document that would incorporate PNG-APP community policing support for initiatives established by BFPNG and FIBA in Port Moresby.
The partnership would see PNG-APP and Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary (RPNGC) officers assist BFPNG to deliver its new Hoops for Health (H4H) program, helping facilitate activities including School-Based Clinics, Daytime Community Hoops and Twilight Basketball that aimed to reduce anti-social behavior and promote healthy living.
The project generated immediate success, with many positive outcomes being achieved in the first six-months of delivery.
For his efforts, Knight was awarded a RPNGC Centenary Medal for Community Service.
Knight didn’t stop there though, in addition to driving the community policing partnership, he also took on the role as team manager for the PNG U18 men’s national team that travelled to Australia last December.
“I really enjoyed being a part of the whole national junior team experience and I am thankful that my commanding officer, Assistant Commissioner Mr. Bruce Giles allowed me to take on that role,” Knight said.
“We had a fantastic group of young men who really appreciated the opportunity to travel overseas. For most, it was their first ever time in a plane, so seeing the excitement on their faces was priceless.”
BFPNG President Nick Daroa praised Knight’s contribution, saying he would be sorely missed in the PNG basketball fraternity.
“Steven has been a tremendous asset to BFPNG and has become a great friend to us all. We thank him deeply for being an outstanding leader, donating so much time and showing major commitment to helping grow our sport,” Daroa acknowledged.
In closing, Knight felt like he had accomplished his major goal with Basketball in Papua New Guinea.
“One of the things I pride myself on is leaving places in a better position than when I first arrived. I feel like I achieved that throughout my time here and I can leave knowing I’ll have friends for life in PNG.”
For more information please contact BFPNG Chief Executive Officer Joel Khalu on firstname.lastname@example.org
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