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Multicultural Round: Reuben William on how he came to Australia from a war-torn South Sudan

Lions launch Multicultural Guernsey Today we launch our 2017 Multicultural Guernsey with the help of Greg Swann, Hon. Grace Grace, Eric Hipwood and Reuben Wiliam.

The Brisbane Lions’ joined Hon. Grace Grace in launching Queensland’s Multicultural Month, with the team to don a Multicultural guernsey against West Coast on Sunday for AFL’s Multicultural Round.

For the Lions’ Reuben William, the Multicultural guernsey represents much more than a playing jumper.

‘This guernsey of ours, means a lot to me and my background…just really overwhelmed and proud to see all of this happening,” William said.

The 19 year old immigrated with his family to Australia to escape a war-torn South Sudan when he was five.

His mother Veronica made the decision in the faith her children could have a better life.

“It was war torn at the time, there was a civil war going on so it wasn’t great.  Mum made the decision to give her kids a better life.  I’m glad she did that because now we are living a better life,” William said.

William alongside his three brothers and two sisters came via plane to Darwin, before eventually settling in Brisbane.

Their mother has never stopped in providing what was best for her family.

“Growing up, it was pretty much a normal childhood.  You know, you see what Mum does to give us that normal childhood.  I’m just really appreciative,” William said.

The Lions half-back says the Multicultural guernsey pays tribute to people like his mother, from all walks of life and countries, who have found their way to Australia.

“There’s several of them everywhere, no matter what culture.  Wearing this jersey is just a sign that we appreciate them.  We appreciate their contribution that they have in our sport and in the country too,” William said.

William can thank his mother for his burgeoning professional career, as it was she who encouraged him and his brothers to pick up a sherrin in the first place.

“We used to run amok in the backyard and my Mum wanted us to do something to let off energy pretty much.  She took us down to the local football club.  We’ve loved it since, and we’re all still playing footy,” William said.

The Brisbane Lions will wear the Multicultural guernsey on Sunday afternoon against the West Coast Eagles at Domain Stadium. 

Dancers from Yeronga SHS at the launch of Multicultural Month (Image: Lions Media)



The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs