By: Fabian Cotter

BUS AND TRUCK manufacturer Fuso, in partnership with reigning NRL premiers Melbourne Storm, recently announced the launch of ‘OF US’ – an initiative to raise awareness and support for grassroots (mental) toughness, the company states.

Melbourne Storm and Fuso have joined forces for the ‘OF US’ initiative.

The initiative’s name, ‘OF US’, is an anagram of Fuso and will feature on the back of Storm player jerseys in their clash tonight against ladder leaders St. George Illawarra Dragons, at AAMI Park.

With Storm players some of the toughest in the league, says Fuso, ‘OF US’ was created as an invitation to become ‘One OF US’ and celebrate fans whom show toughness, which can happen both on and off the field.

Kick-starting the initiative, Melbourne Storm called on supporters’ friends and family to nominate a mate as their chosen ‘tough one’ for the chance to win a money-can’t-buy Mates’ Day experience, Fuso states.

"… toughness comes in many forms. ‘OF US’ was created to acknowledge individuals who have shown undeniable toughness in the face of adversity and to highlight the importance of support groups," said Fuso Truck and Bus corporation director, Justin Whitford.

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Local Kilmore man and ex-police officer Scott Garbutt has been selected as Melbourne Storm’s ‘tough one’ ahead of the upcoming match after being nominated by his wife, Libby. Libby says Scott is not only an avid Melbourne Storm supporter and member, but her best friend, who shows toughness on a daily basis while learning to cope with his PTSD.

Hosted by the Storm, the Mates’ Day experience will see Scott and three guests, including wife, meet and greet with the team and receive tickets to prime seats alongside the players’ bench.

Garbutt was also invited by the Storm head coach Craig Bellamy to the team’s Captain’s Run training session yesterday, giving him exclusive behind-the-scenes access. If the Storm beat the Dragons tonight, Garbutt and his guests will also take part in the team’s post-match lap of honour.

It's Fuso’s third year of partnership with the Storm, having first commenced its relationship in 2016.

Following the Storm’s Mates’ Day battle, one limited edition, signed ‘OF US’ jersey will be auctioned to the public. Funds raised will be donated to Melbourne Storm’s community partner, LIVIN, an organisation aimed at helping break the stigma around mental health.

To find out more or place a bid, head to www.melbournestorm.com.au/fusojersey.

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