Brown takes no prisoners for kids’ charity

Former Central Coast Mariner and the club’s Youth Development Officer Damien Brown has swapped his football boots for prison stripes today, as he joined forces with other local identities and the PCYC to raise funds for the “Time 4 Kids” initiative.

Former Central Coast Mariner and the club-s Youth Development Officer Damien Brown has swapped his football boots for prison stripes today, as he joined forces with other local identities and the PCYC to raise funds for the "Time 4 Kids" initiative.

The annual event is designed to raise public awareness and build support for the PCYC-s work in reducing youth crime and protecting young people and the community.

"We-re raising awareness for the Police Community Youth Club. All funds raised will go toward improving the facility and going toward Police programs to divert anti-social behaviour by kids," said PCYC Bateau Bay Manager Brendan McMahon.

"One of the big things is that people don-t realise we don-t receive any government funding at all for operations so any money we raise through the door goes back into the community. It gets very hard when the government doesn-t help, and without the volunteers helping with fundraisers like this, including the Mariners, we wouldn-t be able to do the work we do," said McMahon.

Brown wasn-t the only well known face to don prison garb, with one half of StarFM-s breakfast show - ‘The Flack-, Wyong Shire Council mayor Bob Graham also amongst those to get behind the initiative.

"The Central Coast Mariners came on board with Damien Brown, The Flack from StarFM, (Wyong Shire) Mayor Bob Graham and Chad Griffith from Surf Life Saving Central Coast, plus others have come on board to help us, so it-s been a great response by the community.

"It-s amazing to see the Central Coast community being so generous with their money and time. It looks as though we-ll raise about $10,000 today so it-s a fantastic response, we couldn-t be happier," said McMahon.

Brown admitted it was a new experience for him, but added he was happy to help out for such a good cause.

"I think my kids would at times like to see me behind bars but no, this is my first time!

"The Mariners would like to think they are involved in all these kind of things, especially with me being a Youth Development co-ordinator, the Central Coast Mariners would like to think we do our part for Central Coast kids and what a perfect way for the Mariners to be involved in something like this," said Brown.

And the former Mariner was taken aback by the amount of money the Central Coast community has pledged, estimated to be around 10-thousand dollars.

"It-s a fantastic amount, it-s not easy to raise that kind of money, I think they have done really well with the display they have got, there are plenty of people looking as they go past so it-s a different way but it-s obviously working and it-s for a good cause.

"For the last couple of years we have been creating all types of programmes so we would like to think we have helped our little bit in a small way to keeping youth off the streets," said Brown.

"Time 4 Kids" is a state-wide event conducted in conjunction with Youth Week and is supported by 26 centres across New South Wales.

Donations can be made by going to www.pcycnsw.org.au