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Coronavirus update – Monday 16th March

In light of the increased spread of the virus and the impact that may have on participants, staff and volunteers we have today taken the decision to cancel temporarily all SSF activity. This has been a hard decision to make as the people we support may well be the most vulnerable. We will continue to support remotely and digitally as our team will be working from home. We will be supporting and promoting the work of our third sector partner organisations especially over holiday periods and will share links to this provision. We will continue to be follow NHS inform and government guidance and will continue to update as and when situation evolves.

Coronavirus update – Friday 13th March

Due to the ongoing situation regarding the coronavirus, we are cancelling all of our sessions and delivery from today Friday 13th March.  This is in accordance with latest guidelines being issued from our Management Committee and Government.  I appreciate these are uncertain times but we feel this is the right decision to take at this time.  This situation will be reviewed on Mon 16th March when we will post an update.  We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

SSF Secure Funding Through Young Start Fund

SSF are delighted to have secured funding through the Young Start fund, to support the delivery of an SSF health and wellbeing community programme.

Welcoming the funding, Project Lead, Jim Boyd, said: “SSF are delighted to r eceive the Young Start funding for the next two years. The investment means we can support children and young people to make positive changes in their physical, mental and emotional wellbeing while building better connections with their local community.”

Young Start is delivered by The National Lottery Community Fund and awards dormant bank and building society cash to projects led by and for young people, to help build their confidence and reach their potential.

We’re incredibly grateful to Young Start and are excited about the impact the project will have.

Read more about the fund’s announcement here

 

SSF Launch Three-Year Strategic Plan

Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) today celebrate their 20th birthday year with the launch of a new strategy for the next three years, which will see them continue their work “changing lives through sport.” The event took place in Glasgow on 23rd January 2020.

The strategic plan for 2020 – 2023 sets out how SSF will deliver high-quality Sport for Change products and services, but to more young people and in more areas. The charity is passionate about putting young people at the heart, delivering programmes with love, care, and empathy. Over the next three years, SSF will focus on three key strategic objectives: developing people, improving health and wellbeing, and strengthening communities.

At SSF young people shape everything they do, down to today’s strategy launch which was planned by SSF’s youth advisory panel. The panel, along with other young people who have been supported through SSF’s work, contributed to the development of the new strategy and attended today’s launch event. The highlight of the event was the inspirational stories these amazing young people shared with the partners and funders in attendance, about how SSF has transformed their lives.

Julia Abel of Inspiring Scotland attended the event and said, “Great to be at SSF’s strategy launch, [hearing] from young people about the importance of changing lives through sport. Proud that CashBack for Communities and Inspiring Scotland can support your work.”

Andrew Marley, Youth Director for SSF, who took part in SSF’s programmes himself before joining their board of trustees, hosted the launch event. He commented on the new strategy, “I myself have benefited from the work that SSF does, from attending as a young person, then volunteer, mentor, and now a board member. Not only has it impacted me, but I see the transformation which SSF has made on many other young people, lives which would be very different and a lot less positive without the work we do.”

SSF’s full strategy document can be accessed here

NEW SPORTS INITIATIVE AIMS TO SUPPORT YOUNG PEOPLE

Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) is to launch two new sports initiatives in West Lothian providing a safe environment for young people to meet, socialise, and learn new skills on Friday evenings.

The charity, which uses the power of sport to inspire young people, is to introduce its Shell Twilight Basketball Programme in Blackburn and Dalkeith following an appeal to find activities to support local young people and keep them occupied, particularly around Bonfire season.

The charity will run their sessions every Friday night, from 6.30pm until 9.00pm at the Blackburn Partnership Centre in Blackburn, and are suitable for both male and female participants.  Sessions for 11 to 13 year olds will run from 6.30pm until 7.45pm; and from 7.45pm until 9.00pm for 14 to 21 year olds.

The Dalkeith sessions will launch on Friday 25th October at Dalkeith High School and will run from 5.00pm until 6.00pm for 11 to 15 year olds and from 6.00pm until 7.00pm for 16 to 21 year olds.  Anyone wishing to attend the free sessions should just turn up on the night at the appropriate time.

The Blackburn Bonfire Night Action Group was established earlier this year to address issues faced in the community around bonfire night.  The team regularly liaise with the Scottish Fire and Rescue service who recommended approaching Scottish Sports Futures.

Lee Clark, Local Authority Liaison Officer for the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service said, “I was made aware of SSF through Police Scotland and having looked at their story and having had a chance to meet the fantastic staff, it’s clear they are a passionate organisation that prides themselves on empowering young people and bringing communities together.”

As well as providing the young people the opportunity to participate in basketball, workshops will provide advice and guidance on a variety of health, wellbeing, and safety initiatives including addiction, bullying and nutrition.

Kirsty McNab, Chief Executive, Scottish Sports Futures added, “Our Twilight programme is a really successful initiative which not only supports young people to make healthy lifestyle choices but it creates an environment which encourages young people to take the lead so they become coaches and reach out to other children in the community who they know would benefit.  In every community where we have launched Twilight we have terrific evidence to show the impact across the community as it’s not just the young people who benefit, families and local citizens also see significant improvements which is a win win situation.”

Shell Twilight Basketball is supported by Shell and the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities fund which takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime and invests them in free activities and programmes for young people across Scotland.

Based in Glasgow, Scottish Sports Futures runs a portfolio of programmes across Scotland with each one focused on the different stages of a young person’s development.  Over 200 volunteers support more than 12,000 people each year.

Further information on the sessions are available by contacting Programme Manager, Sean Brady, sean@ssf.org.uk, 0141 218 4640.   www.scottishsportsfutures.org.uk

SSF Sports Dinner

On Saturday 7th December 2019, Scottish Sports Futures will host our inaugural fundraising sports dinner at the stunning 220 SVS, Glasgow for 200 guests.

 

We cant think of a better way to kick-off (pardon the pun) the festive season. The evening offers fun and laughter hosted by one of the top entertainers in the country, legend Peter Martin and “without a doubt, the best after dinner speaker in Scotland” – Daily Express, John Gahagan.  It really is double trouble and twice the fun with two of Scotland’s most prolific football raconteurs – live and uncensored*

 

With a table for 10 costing just £600 you can’t ask for a better night out and all for a great cause.  

 

To book please fill out and return the attached booking form to emma@ssf.org.uk .

 

*If you do happen to be easily offended this may not be the event for you!

 

Booking form can be downloaded here: SSF Sports Dinner ticket booking form 2019

 

Kirsteen Fast Tracks Support in New Board Role

Kirsteen Sawers has been appointed a non-executive director of Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) and in her first week has signed up to take part in Pedal for Scotland on the 8th of September, a 45 mile cycle from Glasgow to Edinburgh.

A Director with Barclays based in Glasgow, Kirsteen is passionate about the impact sport can have on building confidence amongst young people and was instrumental in setting up an award winning netball club in Bishopbriggs, having taken up the sport herself.

Kirsteen will be taking part in the cycling event alongside SSF’s CEO, Kirsty McNab, whom she met at a Buggy Bootcamp following the birth of their children seven years ago.

She said, “I haven’t owned a bike since I was 13 so taking this on is going to be a big challenge!

“When I was at school my PE teacher was a great role model to me and gave me the confidence to realise that I could go to university and have a successful career.  I’ve never forgotten that and through Kirsty, I’ve admired the work SSF have been doing all over Scotland for some time now to help vulnerable and disadvantaged young people.  If I can reach out to any young people the way my PE teacher did to me then I will be delighted.

“Life is tough for these young people for lots of reasons and sport is a great way of creating a community and providing an opportunity to engage and help.  I’m really looking forward to contributing to the Board and helping to shaping the charity’s valuable work.”

Welcoming Kirsteen to the Board, Kirsty McNab, CEO added, “Kirsteen will be a great ambassador for the charity and has been quick to roll her sleeves up and get involved.   She has an impeccable skills set which will be of tremendous value to our work and I’m delighted she’s on board.”

Local young people create safe Friday night activity

A group of brilliant local young volunteers have worked together to re-launch a community basketball session in Benarty to ensure that other young people can benefit from the initiative in the same way that they did themselves.

The volunteers led by Ewan Mcturk gained support from local councillor Mary Lockhart to secure a new venue and have planned a fundraising disco later this year. Ewan commented:

“There are lots of young people walking around the streets without anything to do so I wanted to provide them with a safe, social environment where they can have fun and play basketball”

The group of volunteers receive training and support from Scottish Sports Futures, a charity focussed on using sport as a tool to change lives. They have put learning into practice in re-launching the session which initially started at Lochgelly High School in 2013. These awesome young people really want to make a positive difference in their community so have taken on all leadership aspects of this project from coaching at the sessions to marketing to get kids off the streets.

Shell Twilight Basketball sessions are designed to provide fun and engaging sports activity for young people aged 11 to 21 years and to give them access to a positive experience at times which can see higher levels of anti-social behaviour. The new sessions are free and will operate every Friday night from 6.30pm to 9pm for both males and females at the Benarty Centre in Ballingry.

Shell Twilight Basketball is supported by title sponsors Shell and the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities fund, which takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime and invests them into free activities and programmes for young people across Scotland.

The national diversionary programme, sponsored by Shell UK Ltd, aims to ensure young people have a safe place to take part in physical activity, make friends and learn a range of skills. The sessions also address a range of issues through interactive workshops such as mental health and wellbeing. Training opportunities are also available to support young people to achieve their full potential.

Shell UK Ltd.’s Communications & Social Performance Advisor, John Raine commented on the initiative: “Shell Twilight Basketball is an exciting initiative that is making a real contribution to social inclusion by giving young people the opportunity to make a number of positive choices for their futures while having fun and learning vital skills.

“Shell support communities near to our UK operations in a number of ways, through activities that meet community needs or address particular issues, often based on

their suggestions. Our contribution to communities ranges from providing grants to local charities to supporting projects that help reduce crime in the area.”

 

For more information visit http://scottishsportsfutures.org.uk/ Shell Twilight Basketball on Facebook or contact stephanie@ssf.org.uk

The Great Get Together

The Great Get Together weekend took place on 19 – 21 June 2019, which would have been Jo Cox’s 46th birthday. This was the fourth time that thousands of people up and down the country have got together to celebrate kindness, community, respect and the values we share. The Great Get Together is inspired by Jo Cox, who was killed on 16 June 2016. 

Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) wanted to take part in The Great Get Together to bring both Shell Twilight Girls sessions together on one night to highlight the importance of coming together as a community although they are all from different backgrounds. The girls from the Govan session can be quite isolated as many are from BAME communities where parents can be reluctant for them to be involved in wider community activities. We have worked hard to ensure parents and young people see Twilight as a safe, inclusive place where they can come to on a Friday night.  The girls from the Wellhouse session suffer from territorialism and young people do not often venture into new communities or areas so have limited chances to meet young people from diverse backgrounds.

SSF’s Great Get Together event was held at Glasgow Drumoyne Sports Club so we provided transport to allow the girls from Easterhouse to come over to Govan.  We also invited parents of the girls to come along as well as inviting local schools and other sports clubs in the surrounding area.

As part of the event our SSF Wellbeing Ambassadors who are part of our Spirit ‘Changing Lives Through Sport’  delivered an educational workshop around mental health & wellbeing. The focus was on the importance of social connections, bringing a group of young people together and the benefits that reaching out to those within your community can have on your mental health. The workshops also looked at celebrating happiness within girls and empowering woman to come together to support each other through kindness and respecting each other. This was brought to life using a piece of wool within the workshop showing the girls we all have things in common and we are all connected in one way or another.

On the night we had 20 young girls participate in The Great Get Together event. One the young girls was asked her thoughts on the educational workshops and expressed:

“It was so lovely to hear someone say something nice about me who just met me 20 minutes ago”

After the workshops both of the girl’s sessions were mixed into two different teams to allow them to play some basketball. Although the girls all come from a range of different backgrounds, they all love being physical activity and that was clear to see from the basketball game. One of the coaches said:

“It’s amazing that an hour ago none of these girls were talking to each other and now they are giving each other high fives and hugs when playing in the same team, it just goes to show the power of sport”

Once the girls had played basketball we provided food and soft drinks for the young girls, this was the highlight of the event as by this stage it was as if the girls had known each other for years. They were sitting eating and mixing with each other as a community, it was lovely to watch and reflect on.

As the event came to an end, the girls tool away t-shirts and goodie bags containing reminders of the important messages from the event about the benefits of coming together as a community. As the girls were departing there was a request for a follow up event:

“Can we get they girls to come down our area to play”

This put a huge smile on everyone’s face as it showed what a good connection the girls had between each other and the true benefit of bringing a community together from different backgrounds and the happiness and respect that a communities can gain from coming together.

On the night we had 20 young girls participate in The Great Get Together event. One the young girls was asked her thoughts on the educational workshops and she expressed;

“It was so lovely to hear someone say something nice about me who just met me 20 minutes ago”

After the workshops both of the girl’s sessions were integrated/mixed into two different teams to allow them to play some basketball. Although the girls all come from a range of different backgrounds, they all love being physical activity and that was clear to see from the basketball game. One of the coaches said;

“It’s amazing that an hour ago none of these girls were talking to each other and now they are giving each other high fives and hugs when playing in the same team, it just goes to show the power of sport”

Once the girls had played basketball we provided food and soft drinks for the young girls, this was the highlight of the event as by this stage it was as if the girls had known each other for years. They were sitting eating and mixing with each other as a community, it was lovely to watch and reflect on.

As the event came to an end, we handed out t-shirts and goodie bags for the girls as a memento of the evening, within these goodie bags were reminders of the important messages the girls gained through this event about the benefits of coming together as a community. As the girls were departing to go home the best quote of the night was a young girl saying to her coach;

“Can we get they girls to come down our area to play”

This put a huge smile on everyone’s face as it showed what a good connection the girls had between each other and the true benefit of bringing a community together from different backgrounds and the happiness and respect that a community can gain from coming together.

New basketball initiative in Fraserburgh to divert youngsters from anti social behaviour

An exciting new initiative at Fraserburgh Community and Sports Centre is designed to provide fun and engaging sports activity for young people in the town aged 11 to 21 years and to give them access to a positive experience at times which can see higher levels of anti-social behaviour in the town.

Shell Twilight Basketball sessions are free and will operate every Friday night from 8pm to 10pm for both males and females. Trial sessions will be offered from 12 July to the end of the holidays when it is intended to launch the full programme.

The sessions are being run with Scottish Sports Futures who have benefitted from a partnership with Shell UK Ltd since 2010.  Shell Twilight Basketball is supported by title sponsors Shell and the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities, which takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime and invests them into free activities and programmes for young people across Scotland.

The national diversionary programme, sponsored by Shell UK Ltd, runs in areas of deprivation and aims to ensure young people have a safe place to take part in physical activity, make friends and learn a range of skills. The sessions also address a range of issues through interactive workshops such as mental health and wellbeing. Training opportunities are also available to support young people to achieve their full potential.

Scottish Sports Futures Manager Sean Brady said. “Our aim is to embed sessions in communities and ensure there is a legacy of local staff and young people to deliver the programme beyond our initial investment”.

Shell UK Ltd.’s Communications & Social Performance Advisor, John Raine commented on the initiative:
Shell Twilight Basketball is an exciting initiative that is making a real contribution to social inclusion by giving young people the opportunity to make a number of positive choices for their futures while having fun and learning vital skills.

“Shell support communities near to our UK operations in a number of ways, through activities that meet community needs or address particular issues, often based on their suggestions. Our contribution to communities ranges from providing grants to local charities to supporting projects that help reduce crime in the area.”

Cllr Anne Stirling, Chair of the Communities Committee, said “I am delighted that SSF and Shell are helping bring Shell Twilight Basketball to Fraserburgh.  It is a priority for Aberdeenshire Council to invest in young people and improve the lives of those in our communities. This project helps to achieve that by providing healthy physical activity, support, training and positive role models”.

Chair of the Sub Committee David Cook added “Basketball is a very inclusive sport and one which is already very popular in Aberdeenshire.  With the Shell Twilight Basketball we hope to introduce a new audience to the sport who will really benefit from the inclusive, supportive and most of all fun, environment it offers”.

The free sessions will be run by staff who are experienced in both basketball and youth work.  There will be opportunities for the young people taking part to meet sporting heroes from the professional Glasgow Rocks Basketball team and even to visit them for big games.

For more information visit Shell Twilight Basketball on Facebook or contact the Fraserburgh Community and Sports Centre.