UWS Community Award recipient: Norman Perry
Norman Perry, professional softball, baseball and t-ball coach, now in his early 80’s, continues to serve the community of Panania with his passion for the game and more importantly, his dedication to helping children from disabled and disadvantaged backgrounds.
Norm has dedicated more than 20 years helping children in the community learn the sport of baseball, as a means of social inclusion and providing them with a sense of achievement that is obtained through being part of the team sport. This all started back in 1986, when Norm built the playing fields in Panania, adequately called “Field of Dreams” himself using scrap metal and mesh, which he then opened to the public in 1991. Costs to improve the grounds were a continuous struggle for a pensioner and through Norm’s amazing contribution to the community, his hard work and labour, coaching and engaging others in the sport, the "Field of Dreams" received an upgrade of the facilities in January 2010
As a result, the “Field of Dreams” provides three state of the art playing diamonds, of world standard, adjacent to the UWS Bankstown Campus. Throughout the years, Norm has helped thousands of people and disability groups engage in society through the self-esteem building, integrity, skills and social interaction that his coaching of the sport involves.
Photo: Sally Tsoutas