About the Arthur Beetson Medal

Arthur Beetson was a great Australian; one of the greatest. In his lifetime Arthur was a leader and a larrikin. He was revered by a nation as the greatest rugby league forward of all time and its first Indigenous Australian captain of a national sporting team. Arthur loved Queensland and in turn Queensland loved him. There would be no State of Origin but for Arthur.

He was a man who had time for everyone and freely gave his time to everyone. A pat on the back from his giant hand or a kind word with his big smile was magical, lives were changed and hard times weren’t so hard. Arthur was a proud Aboriginal boy from the bush, the son of a stolen generation woman. In his death Arthur sadly became the face of closing the gap, dying 15 years before the Australian average life span and from heart disease and diabetes. Even one of the greatest Australian could not escape the fate of too many of his Indigenous Australian brothers and sisters.

On his passing so that Arthur’s remarkable legacy lives on the Arthur Beeston Foundation was set up to help close that gap by engaging the community to empower Indigenous Australians to better outcomes in health, education, sport, employment and business development. The Arthur Beetson Foundation now honours Indigenous Australians who help Arthur’s legacy live on by themselves making an outstanding contribution to Queensland Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander people through Rugby League by presenting them with the Arthur Beetson Medal.

An Arthur Beetson Medallist is a person who like the great man himself cares deeply about their people and honours their culture while displaying Arthur’s terrific talents, skills, and humility on or off the playing field. The Arthur Beetson Medal is not necessarily awarded annually but only when appropriate to a person and the time to do so.

It is only fitting that the first Arthur Beetson Medallist is Johnathan Thurston.

The Queensland Murri Carnival 2022

The Arthur Beetson Foundation is pleased to announce that the Queensland Murri Carnival 2022 will be the biggest Carnival held since its inception.

The Queensland Murri Carnival will be back at the Redcliffe Dolphins Moreton Daily Stadium from Tuesday, 27 September to Sunday, 2 October!

The year the junior events that will take place prior to the start of the Men’s & Women’s competitions have been expanded. The junior boys will be Under 13, 15 & 17 aged groups and the junior girls Under 15 & 17 aged groups with the junior girl’s games being be played under a 9 a side format.

The Carnival is much more than Rugby League as it also has a major focus on Health Vocation and Education. The Carnival will be a smoke drug alcohol and sugar free event and all players have to complete a “Health Check” as a requirement to participate and in addition junior players must have attended school 90% of time.

Steven Johnson Chair of the Arthur Beetson Foundation said that whilst the key focus is on life outcomes it was important that the Carnival expand the junior participation to create better player pathways into the NRL and Intrust Super Cup for young murri talent that may otherwise not be afforded that opportunity. Mr Johnson said that with David Fifita being the latest graduate from the Carnival and the Under 15 program into the NRL that the elite clubs should see the Carnival as a valid pathway event and hopefully not just young players but senior players who have been overlooked in the past might get their shot just like Michael Purcell from Mitchell who is now an Intrust Super Cup superstar.