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Ambassadors in Action at the 2018 Glasgow European Championships

 

The European Championships, hosted by Glasgow, was an incredible event showcasing world class talent from all over Europe. It was also an opportunity for our Shell Twilight Basketball Ambassadors to get involved volunteering.

The GoLive! Zone at Glasgow Green witnessed foot traffic in the thousands over ten days and our ambassadors traveled from as far as Nairn, Glenrothes, Stirling and Dalry. Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) were scheduled to deliver basketball coaching on 4 occasions which the ambassadors helped out at, showing young people how to dribble and shoot the ball. The GoLive! Zone was always packed with young people and their families trying out badminton, tug of war, multi skills obstacle course and football. Ten young people from all over Europe descended on Glasgow as part of the NOMADS project (Europe wide volunteering program). Our ambassadors gelled really well with our visitors and helped them feel more at home during their time in Glasgow.

 

“It was a fantastic experience where I was able to meet people from other Twilight areas. It also allowed me to reach out to people from all areas of the globe and interact which was an experience I won’t forget” Declan Hannah (Dalry Ambassador)

 

“My experience at Glasgow Green and the European Championships was amazing. I got to develop my communication skills. I was also lucky enough to see the swimming on the Wednesday with other members of the SSF team not just from Twilight which allowed me to meet new people and see what they do with their part of SSF. During the time at Glasgow Green a fellow Twilight ambassador and I were interviewed for BBC Children In Needs November show about what we do and what we were doing at the green. That’s an experience I will never forget” Bryanne Ford (Nairn Mentor/Ambassador)

Active East Volunteers Give Over 40,000 Hours

 By Alistair Neil, Active East Youth Development Coordinator

Volunteering is a massive part of Active East. 40,000 volunteer hours have been given by the Active Champions aged 12-24 in the East End of Glasgow to provide local young people with fun, safe, encouraging and happy places to take part in sport, physical activity and youth clubs.

Active East has 4 strands where young people are able to volunteer – Chance:2:Be, Active Champions, Ready Steady Leaders and Mini Mentors. Each of these strands has their own role when it comes to volunteering and are involved in different ways from assisting, leading to mentoring.

Active East volunteers enjoying team building activities

Active East volunteers enjoying team building activities

Volunteers on each of these strands are given the opportunity to design their own volunteer journey – this include picking training, volunteer placement, volunteer role, events they attend and the days they are able to volunteer.

For the young people we work with volunteering is crucial to them and can become a massive part of their life. Volunteering is a place where they develop their skills, meet new people, grow in confidence, receive training, and learn what they would like to do in the future as well as having a huge impact on the lives of so many other people. One Ready Steady Leader has said “I love any aspect of volunteering. Working with Older or Younger people it’s just so fun,” and that “I get to volunteer at large events but also get to help out my community.”

The commitment the young volunteers we work with have for helping in their community and getting involved with every opportunity they can is amazing to see. With the European Championships being in Glasgow this month the Active Champions gave 500 hours the assisting and leading activity at Go Live at the Green, attending events and supporting the games.

 

SSF at the European Championships

The European Championships are coming to Glasgow 2nd-12th August and Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) will be there every day running our multi-sport ‘Activation Zone’. We’ll be running activities all day every day, as well as taking part in activities run by LEAP Sports and the Scottish Association for Mental Health. 

What

Multi-Sport Zone

Every day of the championships we will be at Glasgow Green running a multi-sport Activation Zone from 10am onwards, with help from our Active Champion and NOMADS volunteers. The Activation Zone will have a choice of activities ranging from an assault course to outdoor dominoes, all activities are free and open to everyone. 
We are also running three special basketball sessions with players from the Glasgow Rocks coming along to help coach and offer some expert tips on Saturday 4th 10am-2.30pm, Tuesday 7th 10am-2.30pm, and Thursday 9th 2.30-7pm. 

 

Pride House

Leap Sports are running the Pride House Programme throughout the games, a welcoming space to enjoy the games and to learn about LGBTQI sports, as well as educating people on homophobia and transphobia that exist within sport.
As part of their programme, Active East will be running a free action-packed afternoon of team-building and sports activities on Saturday 4th August, 2-5pm, at Pride House, 17 Trongate, Glasgow. 

For more information check out their programme guide here!

 

SAMH 

SSF staff will be volunteering our time to go and help out at the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) stand every day of the championship at Glasgow Green. We will be there to talk to people about mental health, the importance of physical activity for good mental health, and help provide information on how and where people can get the help they need. SAMH will also be encouraging people to take part in the 5 Ways Challenge – five different ways you can help people every day. 

 

Info Stand

Along with our Activation Zone, every day of the championships we will have our info stand at Glasgow Green, where you can find out more information about SSF, take part in our interactive surveys, and possibly even win some prizes. 

 

Who

Active Champions

Active Champions are a group of young volunteers from Active East will be at Glasgow Green every day to help run our multi-sport Active Zone.
Our Active East programme recruit Active Champions, working alongside these young volunteers to help them achieve a range of qualifications and helping them find volunteer placements with one of our partner organisations so they can make a difference in their local communities in the East End of Glasgow. 

 

Shell Twilight Ambassadors

The Shell Twilight Ambassadors are participants from our Shell Twilight Basketball sessions who will be volunteering throughout the championships at out multi-sport Active Zone.
Ambassadors have under gone training to become youth ambassadors for the programme, as well as role models to other participants. Our Shell Twilight Ambassadors have also taken up leadership roles within their local Twilight sessions, as well as achieving coaching, first aid and child protection qualifications.

 

NOMADS

The NOMADS programme is an Erasmus funded European exchange programme which allows young people from across Europe to travel and volunteer at Sport4all events. This year we sent young volunteers to various work camps and sport events across Europe in partnership with Xchange Scotland. We will also be hosting 11 young people who will be taking part in a work camp at Dean Castle in East Ayrshire, supported and led by 2 SSF volunteers, Gary Penders and Chanelle Gallacher. As part of this Exchange programme they will be coming to Glasgow Green Live Zone to volunteer delivering multi-sports from the 7th – 11th August.

 

Glasgow Rocks

Players from the Glasgow Rocks, Scotland’s only professional male basketball team, will be joining us during the championships to run a series of basketball coaching sessions at our Active Zone. 
SSF work with the Glasgow Rocks throughout the year with players helping to deliver the Jump2it programme – visiting primary schools to promote the benefits of a healthy, active lifestyle and highlighting the dangers of smoking and alcohol. The Glasgow Rocks also work with our Shell Twilight Basketball programme to deliver coaching sessions throughout the year. 

 

Where

Jump2it Reaps the Benefits of National Partnerships

 
By Alan Hendry, Jump2it Education and Development Coordinator

We at Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) believe that all young people should have access to quality sporting provision, and that they should be guided, mentored and supported to realise and reach their full potential. We appreciate that sport can transcend social and cultural boundaries, and has the ability to be used as a tool to educate, upskill and change the lives of young people and their communities. It is for this very reason that we aim to understand the needs of the young people and place them at the heart of all of our programmes.

Utilising the power of sport and physical activity as a tool to bring about positive societal change has long been recognised as a valuable strategy within community development. It is widely acknowledged that participation in sport and physical activity can bring about changes in physical, psychological and social well-being. However, the ‘Sport For Change’ agenda aims to distinguish which approaches are most effective to bring about these changes with a particular focus placed on partnership networking and collaboration.  

The ‘Sport For Change’ agenda is defined as using sport and physical activity as a means of intentionally bringing about positive benefits for both communities and their individuals to meet specific needs within localities. Within this concept sport is used as the hook to engage with individuals, groups or communities and bring about societal change. Although this is a relatively new approach within its wider context and application, we at Scottish Sports Futures have been utilising this model for the last 18 years within our ‘Sport For Change’ programmes.

SSF work with a network of with both local and national partner organisations, professional sporting clubs and role models, and national governing bodies with the aim of encouraging participation in physical activity, as well as promoting physical and mental well-being, community integration and self-efficacy within young people. This approach has allowed us to form a network of partner organisations with combined knowledge around sport and community development and an appreciation of community needs and local young people, which has brought us into this space known as ‘Sport For Change’.

Within the ‘Sport For Change’ agenda there is a pressing need for organisations to adopt a joined up working approach. In today’s economic climate, partnership working is more important than ever before. Collaboration has become a major focus within the third sector in recent years, and with funding pots dwindling there is even more demand on organisations to achieve more with less resources. However, out of this financial necessity comes the possibility of driving forward real innovative change and different approaches to the ‘Sport For Change’ model. The key is to delivering innovative, young person-centred programmes with limited budgets, is to adopt collaborative approaches to delivery.

Partnership working allows organisations to share learning, local knowledge, networks and resources. Adopting a collaborative approach offers different organisations, groups and networks the opportunity to combine forces to tackle development challenges whilst at the same time simultaneously reaping organisational benefits and achieving mutually desired outcomes. 

The purpose of creating networking opportunities is to enable organisations to share best practice and learning, receive training and support collectively to promote joint working approaches. Vital to collaborative working is to identify the desired outcomes of sport and physical activity programmes by each organisation and to work together to ensure that the work complements the work of the other and that work is not duplicated.

All SSF initiatives have been designed with the young people at the heart of decision making, and are specifically designed to encourage participation in physical activity as well as promoting physical and mental well-being, community integration and self-efficacy.

Utilising our sport for change model, SSF have excelled in creating effective partnerships and local networks bringing together local knowledge, youth work and sporting approaches for the most effective sustainable impacts for young people across Scotland. 

Through collaborative work with a variety of community groups, Jump2it have been successful in achieving local community development as well as promoting various community benefits such as volunteerism, active citizenship, community well-being and the creation of local social networks for young people within a sport for change environment.

One effective example of this partnership approach within the Sport for Change model can be demonstrated through the Jump2it’s collaborative work with Police Scotland. Over the last year Jump2it have worked very closely with Police Scotland’s community engagement teams in an attempt to break down barriers and perceptions between police and youngsters within the Glasgow area, while also driving forward community focused outcomes of integration and community well-being. This has proven to be a very effective means of bridging gaps in relations between Police Scotland and the young people of Glasgow, all the while effectively promoting wider inclusion within a ‘Sport For Change’ environment.

Shell Twilight Basketball Creates Sustainable Partnerships

Working in partnership to create sustainable, sport for change programmes and build stronger, more positive communities.
Case Study: Levenmouth.

 By Martyn Horsfield, Shell Twilight Basketball Senior Programme Coordinator

Sustainability continues to be an ambitious goal for any sector, let alone Sport for Change, but Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) have put a real focus on achieving this through their Shell Twilight Basketball (TBB) programme. Significant progress has been made towards creating a long lasting impact within the communities we work in across Scotland. For a long time, sessions have required continuous investment to ensure their longevity, but, as a result of effective partnership working and the upskilling of passionate coaches, we now have sessions that need very little in means of support and are fully self-sufficient.

A great example of a sustainable session is Levenmouth. As one of the longest standing sessions in the TBB programme, Levenmouth has received significant investment to engage local young people in positive, physical activity. The session originally took place at Levenmouth Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre in the heart of Leven, and is where the vast majority of investment was spent. In order to run a successful basketball programme, you need a good facility with the necessary equipment. The other key element of success, that required investment, was quality sessional staff who could lead the session, and act as positive role models for the young people in the community. Due to the nature of leasing a facility and retaining good quality members of staff, the only way to continue the session in this form would have been to continue investing year in, year out. Therefore, with a view to making the session sustainable, change was inevitable.

The first consideration was sessional staff and how we could reduce the cost, or better still, eradicate it completely. This would rely heavily on a volunteer workforce with the skills and knowledge to lead this initiative and continue to have an impact on the young people and the community as a whole. The volunteers would also have to be invested in the session and the aims and objectives that go with it. With this in mind, in addition to the main programme, the TBB Ambassador programme was utilised to develop the next generation of TBB leaders. SSF already had success in volunteer recruitment with their Active East programme, and experience of upskilling young people in the sport for change concept through the Education through CashBack (ETC) programme. We used this learning to provide tailored training and learning opportunities to aspiring young leaders.

Shell Twilight Ambassador Rodizza leads a Twilight session

Shell Twilight Ambassador Rodizza leads a Twilight session

 Over three years, Levenmouth has had a total of ten young people join the ambassador programme, who now take the lead every Friday night at their TBB session. The young people were supported through the process by a mentor, giving them valuable feedback, and providing opportunities to further learn and develop. Their mentor, Callum Knox, has been involved in the programme since its conception as a sessional member of staff, and is looked up to as a positive role model. Who better to support the young people to develop the skills and confidence required to coach than the person employed to coach them in the first place? Since Callum started his mentoring role, he has cut back his involvement at the session and currently visits on a monthly basis to check in with the ambassadors and ensure the session is running smoothly.

Shell Twilight Ambassadors Rodizza, Rachel, and Jordyn with head coach Callum Knox.

Shell Twilight Ambassadors Rodizza, Rachel, and Jordyn with head coach Callum Knox.

During the initial period of investment, the TBB programme is free to young people between the ages of 11 and 21, to remove participation barriers for young people from areas of deprivation. However, in order to keep the programme free at the point of delivery, we would have to come to an arrangement with a local sports/community centre with the correct fixtures and fittings for basketball, which is no easy task. When reaching out to local partners, Fife Council’s Community Learning and Development team engaged in conversations around the value of the programme in the local area, and what they could do to support the session. They agreed to include TBB as part of their youth provision for two hours on a Friday evening, and provide a space in a local community sports centre for the session to continue. The centre is primarily an indoor football hall, with only two poor quality basketball hoops fitted to the side walls to create one cross court. However, the centre is right in the heart of the community, has a large space for young people to participate in physical activity, and we were offered the use of the facility for two hours every week at no cost. In order to improve the suitability of the facility for us, and improve its use within the community as a whole, we decided to look into fitting basketball hoops. This would be a one-off investment that would allow the programme to continue for the foreseeable future, with no further costs.                                                            

Various partners have been involved in the process, including St Andrews University, who kindly donated two heavy duty, swing out basketball hoops, wall brackets, and backboard fittings, to support the work being undertaken within the community. Levenmouth Community Sports Hub, which is made up of various local partners including Active Schools, Sports Development, clubs, and residents, offered £172 to contribute towards the fitting of the hoops. The remainder of the cost was covered by the session participants’ fundraising efforts. Thanks to the support from partners and participants, we now have a fully operational hall that provides TBB sessions to young people in the Levenmouth area at no cost. This was a significant piece of work but really lays the foundation for sustainable, sport for change programmes across the country, and an example of what effective partnership working can achieve.            

Girls Night In

Last week Shell Twilight Basketball held its first ever Girls Night In at Glasgow Club Drumoyne in Govan. The night brought together participants from the Govan and Wellhouse girls-only sessions, for an evening of celebration and empowerment.

The girls came together for a basketball tournament with each team consisting of a mixture of participants from each of the two sessions. Following the basketball tournament, the girls were given the chance to try out Brazilian Jiu Jitsu run by World Champion, Erin Wilson, and football, with Rangers Women’s and Girl’s Academy Manager, Amy McDonald, followed by some snacks and goodie bags. 

The event was organised by our Shell Twilight Basketball Coordinator Preeti Jassal, along with Shell Twilight Ambassador and volunteer Amanda Hiddleston, who took an active role in supporting Preeti with the planning and running of the event.

Funded by Spirit of 2012 and Cashback for Communities, the Shell Twilight Girls initiative was launched in early 2018. Based upon the Shell Twilight Basketball programme, combining sports with education and life skills, the Shell Twilight Girls programme is aimed at encouraging inactive girls into sport in a safe and friendly environment.

For more information about Shell Twilight Girls, or any of our other programmes, click here.

 

 

Jump2it Community Engagement


By Alan Hendry, Jump2it Education and Development Coordinator

Over the last decade Scottish Sports Futures (SSF) has established itself as a vehicle for community engagement and development across Scotland. Utilising the power of positive role models, SSF’s community programme Jump2it educates children on the importance of healthy lifestyles and positive lifestyle decisions, using basketball as the hook to engage with youngsters.

One of the many aims of the Jump2it programme is to create opportunities for community development throughout Scotland. Jump2it is delivered in collaboration with local partners within each area, and has continued to effectively demonstrate itself as a vehicle for community development by promoting social inclusion. The programme also provides various other community benefits such as volunteerism, active citizenship and community well-being, along with the creation of social networks in each local area. Working in close collaboration with a variety of partners including schools, the Glasgow Rocks, Active Schools, Police Scotland, and the young people themselves, Jump2it has been successful in using sport and education as a tool to bring excluded groups together. Through this partnership working, the Jump2it programme has been successful at bridging gaps within communities and promoting effective social inclusion within a ‘Sport for Change’ environment.

Over the last year Jump2it have worked particularly closely with Police Scotland’s community engagement teams in an attempt to break down barriers and perceptions between police and youngsters within the Glasgow areas. Officers from Police Scotland’s Community Safety Teams have also been involved with the hands on delivery of the Jump2it programme alongside the Glasgow Rocks players. The police have taken an active role in speaking with children about the dangers of knife crime and the importance of online safety. This has proven to be a very effective means of bridging gaps in relations between Police Scotland and the youngsters of Glasgow, all the while promoting wider inclusion within an open, safe environment.

In addition to this the Police Scotland Youth Volunteer (PSYV) programme has also taken on an active voluntary role at this season’s Glasgow Rocks home games. This group of volunteers has taken on the responsibilities of stewarding throughout the season, which has been very warmly received by the Glasgow Rocks team and fans. 

Through collaborative working, Jump2it and Police Scotland have been able to achieve particularly high levels of community engagement throughout Glasgow. Police Scotland and the PSYV have played a massive role in the delivery of the Jump2it programme and Glasgow Rocks game day experiences, and have also engaged with the local young people through every stage of the Jump2it programme.