JOYCE McNab has been fundraising since 1972 so her beloved Semaphore Centrals netballers could have their own clubroom.
Now, nearly half a century after she made her first cake for a clubroom fund stall, that dream has been realised
The 300-strong club opened its new home – which cost about $200,000 – at the Lefevre Community Centre last month.
Joyce, 82, who founded the Centrals all those 46 years ago, had previously hosted meetings and get-togethers out of her own Taperoo home while building the finances.
The State Government and Port Adelaide Enfield Council eventually came to the party with additional support. The Centrals contributed $90,000, which was topped up by $25,000 from the State Government and $90,000 from the council.
“I never realised how much it kind of weighed on me until it was over,” Joyce says. “I thought, ‘Oh, I can sleep’. Not a lot of sleep … but I knew I’d thrown off a great big blanket and I didn’t know how heavy that blanket was.”
In the early days, she was out on the first Sunday of every month selling cakes to build up money for the clubroom, along with various other fundraisers.
“I’ve been fighting with the council (for funding) for 20 years – and I just thought there’s such a need for it,” she says. “I have so loved the game. I started when I was six and played until I was 58.”
She racked up 465 games in her playing career – and has watched many more.
But the most important thing, she says, is the “beautiful and lifelong friends” made through the Semaphore Centrals. And now, finally, they have a place to call home.