What CommBank Pararoo Daniel Campbell knows about money

14 June 2024

  • Daniel Campbell, who was born with cerebral palsy affecting both his legs, joined the CommBank Pararoos at 15 and won national player of the year at 19.
  • Working at his local KFC helped him learn the value of money and minimise spending on unnecessary items.
  • He advises young people to save half of their earnings and maintain a balanced approach between saving and spending.
  • His philosophy in sport is to “stay consistent and don’t let your disability be a disadvantage.”

Daniel Campbell’s cerebral palsy affects both his legs, making it difficult for him to run and jump. At 15, he joined the CommBank Pararoos, Australia’s men’s football team for athletes with cerebral palsy, acquired brain injury, or symptoms acquired from stroke, was awarded national player of the year at 19, and at 21, has more than 20 caps for the country. Here, Daniel shares how his determination and adaptability have shaped his career and finances.

Video: Join Georgie Tunny on The Brighter Side as she gets to know Daniel Campbell, a CommBank Pararoo

He started saving (almost) as soon as he started earning

The year before he made the CommBank Pararoos at 15 years old, Daniel Campbell was working at his local KFC. “I’d work 12 hours a week, but it would only take me an hour to spend all that money,” he says with a laugh. “Then I was like, ‘I should probably start saving and being more disciplined with the money.’ That’s when I realised how valuable money is.”

He learnt to focus on his needs over his wants

These days, the 21-year-old spends his money on the usual things: rent, gym membership, food (“I have to start cooking for myself, which isn’t fun”) and less on wants, like “shoes or clothes that are unnecessary”, as he prioritises his needs.

Daniel applies his ability to adapt and reach a desired outcome to other areas of his life too. “Not all of them”, he assures us, but definitely his football career. Daniel was born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and came to Australia as a 6-month-old with his adopted family. From a young age, he says, “I always had a ball at my feet.” When he was 4, he was diagnosed with cerebral palsy. This did not impact his spirit and the next year, he joined his local football club. His philosophy? “Stay consistent and don’t let your disability be a disadvantage.”

He has a balanced approach to saving

Daniel may only be 3 years out of school but he has some solid advice for young people working their first jobs: “I would say, move 50% of your wages into a savings account and then you have 50% to spend. As long as you’re keeping an even amount going each way.” As for young athletes who dream of playing for the CommBank Pararoos? “Always work on your football ability, stay consistent and don’t let your disability be a disadvantage. I look at my disability as a pro because if I didn’t have a disability, I wouldn’t be able to play for the CommBank Pararoos.”

CommBank is a passionate supporter of the CommBank Pararoos and ParaMatildas to create more opportunities for all to play. Find out more about how CommBank supports football

Things you should know

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