MEMBERS of Horsham's Indigenous and footballing communities have remembered Adam Goodes' lasting positive contribution to the club, ahead of two documentaries about him being released this year.
The first, The Final Quarter, details the last three years of Goodes' AFL career at the Sydney Swans using archival footage, and will be shown at the Sydney Film Festival on Friday.
Swans, Greater Western Sydney and Indigenous players had a preview screening.
Barengi Gadjin Land Council executive officer Brett Harrison, who grew up with Goodes and his brothers Brett and Jake, said Adam's ongoing fight against racism was empowering for the Wimmera's Indigenous community.
"I think people are going to look back in 50 years and see how he single-handedly changed the way a nation sees itself," Mr Harrison said.
"I'm not too sure if the films will change peoples' minds or perspectives like they should - there are still haters out there that are always going to have their say - but if you have a negative perspective, try and take something out of it that changes that."
Goodes was repeatedly booed by opposition fans at matches in the final three years of his career, after calling out a young Collingwood fan who made a racial slur against him during an AFL match.
Mr Harrison was one of several figures part of the #isupportAdamGoodes campaign in the final year of his AFL career.
"It was good for Adam to stand up, but another thing for the community too," he said. "I hope those messages changed the way people think about race."
Mr Harrison said efforts to connect during NAIDOC and National Reconciliation Weeks were another important influence on the future of the Wimmera's indigenous community.
Goodes played three senior and two reserve matches for the Horsham Demons across 1995 and 1996, when he was just 15, prior to which he played at Horsham's Sunnyside junior club.
He was drafted to the Sydney Swans off the back of a six-goal performance in the North Ballarat Rebels' 35-point win over Dandenong in the 1997 VSFL Under-18s Grand Final.
Rod Dumesny, a former chairman and ongoing volunteer with the Demons, said his potential was recognised early.
"There were blokes coming along just to watch him play. After one of his matches against the Warracknabeal Eagles my boss went to me 'tell me when that kid plays again, I'm gonna go watch him'," he said.
"He was always willing to do whatever he could to help the juniors. I remember when I was the director of junior development he was always happy to help if we wanted a signed jumper for an auction, and he'd always ask how the juniors were going."
Current chairman Geoff Lord said Goodes was well respected as a footballer that cut his teeth in Horsham before going on to achieve great things.
"In 2015 with Dimboola we began the Goodes brothers' cup to commemorate Indigenous round annually recognising Adam's time at Horsham and Brett's (Adam's brother who played for Dimboola) matches with the Western Bulldogs," he said.
"Adam's an Australian Of The Year, which is something you earn, and people need to remember him for good things he's done and to understand what he has been fighting for."
Another film about Goodes is scheduled to open the Melbourne International Film Festival in August.
The Australian Dream incorporates archival footage with specially-shot vision of key players in Goodes' story, and looks at the events off the football field as well as on it.
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