Well-Being Australia provides two respite facilities for AIS athletes and coaches: Basil Sellers Moruya on the New South Wales south coast, two hours from Canberra; and Basil Sellers Tweed, one hour from Brisbane.
Mark Tronson, is a Baptist minister of 32 years and his wife Delma, established the Well-Being Australia ministry in 2000, which largely focuses on Respite.
Last year Delma and Mark Tronson visited the Softballers at their camp in Brisbane; but this year their annual visit was in Canberra during the softball training camp preparing for next year's World Cup.
As the training camp was being held in Canberra, Mark and Delma Tronson also arranged a Country Town Tour mission to rural Victoria after their visit to the Australian and AIS Sotballers. They also invited AIS Chaplain of 20 years, Peter Nelson, to attend and meet the coaches and the athletes.
After head coach, Fabian Barlow, had introduced Delma and Mark Tronson, they discovered that there were only eight of last year's present, as many of the women had retired after the Beijing Olympics.
Mark asked those eight young women whether they could tell the same joke as last year, and permission was readily given. Here it is: Mark explained that that he and Delma were happily married for 32 years and their secret was that he stammers and Delma has a hearing disability, therefore he can't talk and Delma can't hear.
Then it was time for the more serious business of the visit; to hand out information about the importance of 'respite' and explain the purpose of taking 'time out'. Delma and Mark pointed out to the softball squad that it was never too early to think of respite as part of their training program.
As an illustration of how important respite can be for more mature professional sportsmen, they discussed the recent publicity about the Australian cricketers. They explained that Ricky Ponting had come home for three weeks during the Ashes series in England, as had coach Tim Nielsen. On the other hand, Australia had been held back by eight injuries in India, and a further two top players had been sent home for fear of injury, before the series in India ended.
Moreover fast bowler Brett Lee acknowledged that in the past nine months he has only had two nights at home in own bed and the toll that that has taken in every aspect of his life has been in the public domain. He recently commented that his Test Cricket career may be at an end.
The young softballers were informed that Well-Being Australia provides excellent and caring respite facilities for athletes. The AIS recognises how important respite is as part of a normal training program and it gives the opportunity for athletes to participate in available respite sessions.
Mark and Delma Tronson are grateful to AIS for giving them the opportunity to inform young athletes of the Well-Being Australia program so early in their career.
Afterwards, Delma interviewed Softball super star Kylie Cronk tv.bushorchestra.com/Sport/videopages/kylie_cronk.html
and Mark interviewed Fabian Barlow tv.bushorchestra.com/Sport/videopages/fabian_barlow.html, both on camera for the Australian Missionary News IPTV (Television on the Internet). These interviews can also be viewed at www.safeworlds.net