Often it is the people behind the scenes which make or break the success of an event or programme and in Fiji the hard work of Kinismere Ravai has been recognised with the 2017 Fiji Sports Volunteer Award.
Ravai’s outstanding commitment to the Fiji Football Association and the OFC Just Play programme was recognised at last month’s awards ceremony and said it was a proud day for her and her family.
“I am very happy and proud that I have been honored for my hard work,”Ravai said.
“This is my second prestigious award I would say, because I won the silver medal in 2017 when I participated at the Fiji Games.”
Ravai said this was the first time she had won something at the Fiji Sports Awards, and had previously been nominated by Fiji FA for FASANOCs Voices of the Athletes Champion in 2012.
The 36 -year -old passionate sportswoman, who hails from Soa, Nakorotubu, has volunteered and played many different sporting arenas.
“I first started playing football in 1998 and then I played softball, shooting, hockey and rugby,” Ravai said.
“I always try different sports because I am very passionate for every sport and love to play different games.”
The former Fiji international was grateful to Fiji FA for nominating her for her services to the OFC Just Play programme where she has been a volunteer since 2009.
“I have been volunteering for Fiji FA for the past eight years, I first started in 2009 when the OFC Just Play programme was first introduced in Fiji.
“It is challenging as we take our time but it is my passion for football that I never gave up as a volunteer and today I have achieved great things thanks to all the hard work I did.”
Although she has played across many different disciplines, football remains very close to Ravai’s heart having represented the country in a number of regional events.
“I played for the national women’s football team in 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015 as a central defender and won the bronze medal in 2007 and 2011 at the Pacific Games.”
Ravai said she always believed in almighty first.
She dedicated her award to all the volunteers and families and friends.
“I dedicate this to all the volunteers and I would advise them to continue their hard work and a day it will be paid off.
For Ravai that pay off has come in the form of a full-time job with Fiji FA as a Just Play instructor and coordinator.