Caring coach recognised

Kim Dunstan is a finalist for the Coach of the Year award at the Victorian Sport Awards. (Damjan Janevski) 279722_02

A calisthenics coach has been nominated for an award for her work in supporting students throughout the COVID-19 lockdowns.

Kim Dunstan, owner and principal of K&K Calisthenics in Ravenhall, has been nominated as a finalist for the Gallagher Community Coach of the Year award in the Victorian Sports Awards.

During the Melbourne lockdowns, Ms Dunstan offered Zoom classes to her students with extra activities such as trivia, cooking, bingo and video games in order to help them stay engaged. She also arranged courier deliveries of care packages to her club members.

“Calisthenics wasn’t our main emphasis in lockdown, it was about their mental health and keeping them interactive, even though we couldn’t see each other,” Ms Dunstan said.

“That’s what being a better coach is about, not just the sport, it’s about people feeling wanted and cared for and helping them to give their best so that they can really enjoy sport.”

Ms Dunstan is passionate about inclusive sport and said she believes everyone should have the chance to be included in a team.

“Being able to give them the patience, support, guidance and to continue to build their confidence and skills in the technique of our sport so that they can be part of the team gives me the most pride as a coach,” she said.

The Victorian Sport Awards is an event that recognises those who have made an exceptional contribution to sport and active recreation in the state and acknowledges individuals, team athletes, coaches, administrators and volunteers.

The awards recognise those who have excelled at a grassroots and community level as well as high-profile athletes and olympians.

Olivia Condous