Growing up with cerebral palsy, Luc Launder struggled to explain to his friends why his left foot would drag behind him or why he would trip over when he played football with his mates. But regardless of whatever challenges came his way, Luc remained undefeated in pursuit of his dreams of playing football for Australia.
Luc found the game like any other kid would, growing up with mates and discovering his talent on the school ground. Around age nine, Luc moved to a new school and made new friends who loved to play football at lunchtime.
He fell in love with the game and since then, has worked his way up from playing socially to playing for Tuggeranong United’s NPLY U14 team last season.
Not only has football been an outlet for Luc, but it has also helped him physically.
“I like to say living with cerebral palsy is more of an inconvenience than a struggle because I can still play football and do other things,” Luc said. “I just need to adapt to them. Football has definitely helped me physically. I have been able to strengthen my side where I’m affected and it’s been able to help fix my running.”
Luc’s football ability recently caught the eye of Pararoos head coach Kai Lammert, who invited the 15-year-old to train with the squad earlier this year. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, he hasn’t been able to go to any training camps but he is hoping to join the team soon.
“At first I didn’t really believe that I was part of the Pararoos squad, but when I started attending all the zoom and all the other requirements, it hit me,” Luc shared. “I actually have a chance at representing my country one day. There is still a long way for me to go if I want to play games with the squad but if I work hard, I’m going to get there.”
The Pararoos’ and Luc’s unbreakable spirit is evident through the Undefeated Challenge, a virtual fundraising event to raise money for the Pararoos’ footballing journey, so the team can prepare and attend the IFCPF World Championships in Spain rescheduled for 2021.
The goal was to raise $25,000 and the participants did not disappoint, doubling that mark, reaching $52,000.
When it’s all said and done, Luc has big goals he wants to achieve and with his mentality, nothing is unreachable.
“I want to play the most games and score the most goals, that is everyone’s dream but I want to make it happen,” he said.
Click HERE to read more about the Undefeated Challenge and how you can help the Pararoos and Luc achieve their goals!