April 2018 marks the 70th birthday of the Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia. With more than 188,000 members and one million licensed firearm owners participating in our safe, fun and all-abilities activity, it is clear sports shooting and recreational hunting is flourishing in Australia.
To help celebrate this special occasion, the SSAA is encouraging members to introduce a friend to our sport. With our top shooters setting the gold standard at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, now is a great time to capitalise on the surging interest.
As SSAA National President Geoff Jones explains in his birthday message, educating others about safe firearms handling is invaluable. Simply showing someone a firearm, who may not have seen one before, can in itself dispel any misgivings. Even if they don’t choose to pursue our sport any further, a positive experience with shooting can go a long way.
For those who discover their passion or hidden skill for our sport, signing them up to be part of the SSAA family gives us strength in numbers, along with the added member benefits. As we march towards 200,000 members, this gives us more weight politically, but also results in increased funding for the state and territory SSAA branches that look after our 450-plus clubs and ranges.
We are also encouraging our members to nurture the next generation of shooters. The SSAA’s ongoing Sponsor a Junior initiative is a great way to introduce a young person to our sport, while educating our future shooters about our great tradition. Junior shooters are the lifeblood of our sport.
Share in the celebrations by emailing your photos or stories about how you have introduced someone new to our sport. Happy 70th birthday!