Background to the Formation of the Amelia McGuiness Australian Snowsports Development Foundation.
On 27th August 2009, 16 year old Amelia McGuiness tragically died in a skiing accident on the slopes at the Perisher Resort, whilst there to participate in the NSW Interschools Snowsports Championships.
Her death devastated not only her immediate family – parents Cath and Sam, brothers Lachlan, William and Hamish - her extended family and friends, but also hundreds of teenagers across Sydney. Amelia, from a sheep and cattle farm in Boorowa (Central NSW), was a popular Year 11 boarder at Barker College.
Amelia was a gift to all who were fortunate to have known her. While mourning her death, we have determined to make something positive out of this tragedy. Amelia loved life and outdoor pursuits and always encouraged others to do the same. During her short life she had pursued many sports and had even completed a tandem sky-dive.
She was a passionate and experienced skier, as are all her family. As a tribute to Amelia the “Amelia McGuiness Australian Snowsports Development Foundation” (AMASDF) has been established. The AMASDF is dedicated to providing practical support (for equipment, training, and resources – not cash grants), to up-and-coming winter snowsports athletes from the age of 10 to 19 years old, across all disciplines including disabled snowsports. The AMASDF is supported by the Australian Sports Federation (ASF) through the Australian Sport Incentive Program, which enables donations of $2 or more to the ASF/AMASDF to be tax deductible.
The AMASDF Management Committee has representatives from across the Snowsports Community who have wide-spread experience and knowledge in this field, along with links to the State and National Discipline Committees and Boards, and the Australian Snow Resorts and their communities. It is anticipated that in coming years, that the AMASDF will continue to maintain and expand its level of support for Junior Snowsports Athletes across Australia. The AMASDF operates through the NSW Snowsports Association (NSW Ski Association Ltd), with support for its establishment and initiatives from Ski and Snowboard Australia (SSA), and Interschools Australia.
And so, from the tragedy of Amelia’s death, something positive has been created.
Launching the Amelia McGuiness Australian Snowsports Development Foundation
The 1st anniversary of Amelia’s death fell in the week of the 2010 NSW State Interschool’s Snowsports Championships held at Thredbo. The AMASDF Management Committee with assistance from NSW Interschools Snowsports, held the inaugural Amelia McGuiness Memorial Time-Trial, with over 300 student, parent, and community members taking part, including Amelia’s family. In addition, a raffle together with an auction of donated articles later that day raised over $30,000.00 for the AMASDF. It is planned to build on this new beginning for the AMASDF in the coming years.