Danny Frawley will be memorialised at St Kilda’s headquarters, with a new $16 million community wellbeing hub in Moorabbin to be named after him.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg confirmed on Thursday that a new Danny Frawley Centre for Health and Wellbeing would be established at the Saint’s training base.
Mr Frydenberg said the federal government would be contributing $8.5 million, with the state government also be making a “significant contribution”.
“You will have education facilities, consulting suites, there’ll be an information point for school kids and other community groups to learn more about mental health,” Mr Frydenberg told Triple M’s Hot Breakfast.
“Not only do we want to provide a cure for people who’ve got challenges, but we also want to prevent people getting those challenges in the first place.
“This will be a really important initiative. And in that area (south-east Melbourne), there are hundreds of thousands of people who live there, as well as through St Kilda’s reach as a football club to many more.
“I think this will be a lasting legacy and a fitting tribute to one of the great footballers and Victorians, Danny ‘Spud’ Frawley.”
The St Kilda champion showed great passion, determination and commitment to championing mental health prior to his shock death in September 2019.
Frawley’s widow, Anita, said the family was “incredibly proud” and that the facility had the potential to have a “powerful” impact when talking to the Herald Sun for the first time since his passing.
“Danny just wanted to help people. He suffered so much, and for this centre to come through is just incredible,” Anita told the Herald Sun.
“Even though he’s not here, he will make a difference.”
Moorabbin was home away from home according to Anita a place he spoke “so proudly” about.
“His famous quote about ‘manning up’ is just so relevant and this centre will help bring it all to fruition,” she said.
“His footy achievements were incredible, but this, in time, will really stand as his legacy. Everyone knows how passionate he was about mental health.
“He wanted people who were suffering, men especially, to speak up and just talk about it and be listened to.”
Saints president Andrew Bassat said his club was “extremely humbled” by the governments contributions.
“In establishing what role the club and Danny Frawley Centre could play in the community, we have been guided by some of Victoria’s most respected mental health experts and organisations,” he said.
“We will continue to partner with others to deliver vital education programs that serve to decrease the stigma attached to mental illness and promote proactive steps people can take to achieve positive mental health.
“Danny was not only a champion of St Kilda, but a leading voice in encouraging people to speak up about their struggles with mental health and to seek help.
“We are humbled to continue his work by creating a welcoming place where not only St Kilda people, but the broader community, can connect, grow and be well – physically and mentally.”
Victorian Tourism, Sport and Major Events Minister Martin Pakula said the centre will play a crucial role in continuing Frawley’s legacy.
“Danny Frawley was an inspirational Victorian on and off the field, and helped many people through his efforts to promote awareness of mental health issues,” Mr Pakula said.
“The establishment of this centre is a fitting acknowledgment of his work and his standing in the community and will provide an enduring legacy.”
St Kilda has said construction of the centre is set to commence prior to Christmas, with the project scheduled to be completed in early 2022.
Frawley was a St Kilda champion and long-time club captain, playing 240 games across 12 seasons at full-back.
Danny Frawley held a vision of a world where mental health support was available to those in need.
Today, we realise that vision.
Together with the Federal and State Governments, we're proud to announce the Danny Frawley Centre for Health & Wellbeing.
— St Kilda FC (@stkildafc) November 18, 2020