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Changing Lives Through Sport – Shell Twilight Basketball

Adam came along to the very first session we had on the 5th September 2014, he was a quiet young teenager who was accompanied by his older brother.  As Adam continued coming weekly he began to develop into a not so quiet boy; he was excessive in his use of expletives and disregard for the coaches.  He would often comment on decisions and drills as well as get involved in disputes that he was not part of, just to start trouble.

After one specific incident, Adam was asked to leave the session. When he returned, Adam was open and apologised to the coach he argued with, explaining that he was having a difficult time at home, but he didn’t want to discuss this further.  Adam again had an issue with the session when he turned up to the session after taking drugs, he was asked to leave and the police were contacted for advice by the coaches who were on the session. Adam continued to not listen or engage with coaches or show respect at the session to participants or youth workers. The next week Adam returned and took part in a quickly organised Educational Timeout (ETO) on drugs and safety.  Adam took this seriously as he was surprised by some of the facts and figures that were shown as well as some of the experience that the coaches had from their employment outside of Twilight.  This seemed to be a turning point for Adam and he became more open about home life and the things that he was feeling.

Over the next year Adam became a staple to the group, someone who was always in attendance and also someone the new, younger participants looked up to.  His younger brother started to attend and it was easy to see the admiration the boys showed for one and other, due to the age they had 30 mins cross over time with sessions that they loved.  It was this that showed Adam’s gentler side, the side that would develop into who he is now as a man.

Adam began approaching me in the sessions and asking to speak to me about his life outside of basketball.  We discussed his home life, how to be safe, keeping a mentality that is focused and sign posting places to go for additional specified support.  Adam shared that he has been self-harming to cope with the stress of home life, to this I offered guidance and support on being safe and the danger points and areas of self-harming but also that there are people who know a lot more than I do and perhaps he should visit a drop in for advice or his GP. Adam took the advice on board and continued sharing by letting me know that he has moved out of his house because he was struggling to live with his Mum and step dad, their relationship was straining on his own with his Mum.

After a few weeks , Adam came to tell me he has now got furniture for his flat as well as doing some shopping, he was struggling to eat but was standing on his own two feet and this was allowing him time to see his family. His relationship with his Mum was improving and he was starting to see a light in what had been a very dark and lonely place for him.  I expressed my regard for him that he had developed so much from a teenager ready to fight for nothing to a man willing to stand up to what he saw as important and the ability to do this whilst maintaining his mischievous grin!!!  Adam seemed quiet at my praise and shy at the fact that I had seen him grow, though it was clear to see he liked the fact that I noticed how much he’d grown.

“Shell Twilight Basketball has been a family to me; It is the only place I can go to release all my stress and hardships. As soon as I step foot on the court all my worries fade. Andrew, as well as all the coaches at my session, have helped me through all my crisis. I am greatly thankful to all the people that made Twilight happen, and to all the coaches and people that attend”

– Adam Wilson

It overwhelmed me and changed my whole concept on the impact we have on these kids and young people who attend the session, we are not there to simply coach a sport. We are there as a shoulder to lean on, to offer knowledge and support, to be a role model and most times to simply listen and praise the smallest efforts.  To someone who doesn’t hear it often, nothing will make you stand taller than when you hear it from someone you look up to.

Adam is now volunteering at the session and has been accepted into the Army after going through the interview process.


  • Andrew McCandlish, Coach at the Stranraer Shell Twilight Session

Scottish Sports Futures’ Adventure at Sea

The fifth voyage of OYT Scotland’s “On Course with CashBack” project has just finished with nine young people from Scottish Sports Futures spending five days sailing around the Firth of Clyde. The young people learnt to navigate and steer the 70ft sail training yacht Alba Venturer, hoist and drop sails, tie knots and cook for the whole crew. Leaving Greenock’s James Watt docks on Monday morning, 5th June, the crew sailed a total of 135 nautical miles, visiting Holy Loch, East loch Tarbert and Loch Ranza (Arran).

The young people threw themselves into the experience, working hard to achieve the goals they had set themselves. New skills were developed throughout the week long voyage which they can now take back and use in their daily lives. One crew member explained; “My experience with OYT Scotland was amazing. I learned a lot about sailing as well as everyday personal and social skills. The experience was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I am unbelievably lucky to have been a part of it”

The weather was very good for the first-time sailors with sunshine, clear views and fair winds. On day three of the voyage, the crew were graced by a visit from a 10 foot Minke whale right beside the boat! Seeing the wild sea creature that close “was one of the most breath taking moments of my life” said one of the young people on board, showing that OYT Scotland voyages help young people to understand more about the natural world and encourage conservation.

All the young people worked towards gaining the Royal Yachting Association’s Start Yachting Level 1 Award, and took the opportunity to complete 9 SQA qualifications in: listening, reading, speaking, writing, measuring, calculation, using graphical information, problem solving and working with others.

OYT Scotland’s “On Course with CashBack” project is transforming 288 young people’s lives over three years thanks to an award from the “CashBack for Communities” scheme – the Scottish Government’s proceeds of crime fund.  Cabinet Secretary for Justice Michael Matheson said: “Through CashBack we are supporting many of Scotland’s most disadvantaged young people to reach their full potential in life, helping them to learn new skills, boost their confidence and develop as responsible citizens.”

Established in 2000, Scottish Sports Futures is a registered charity, delivering ‘Education through Sport’ programmes in communities across Scotland. Using inclusive sport and physical activity as a means of engagement, they offer young people creative ways to learn about physical wellbeing, goal setting, teamwork and active citizenship. Like OYT Scotland, Scottish Sports Futures is a recipient of the current CashBack for Communities phase 4 funding.

Supporting the young people to take part in the voyage were two group leaders from Scottish Sports Futures, Melissa Cairns and Sean Brady. They said “The OYT Scotland voyage allowed us to offer a completely new and challenging experience to young people from across Scotland. The daily routine allowed young people to build on practical skills including cooking and presenting in front of a group amongst many others. The voyage was a test for everyone including us as leaders but one which allowed us to work as a team along with the sea staff and push ourselves out of our comfort zones. We have 3 young people interested in volunteering with OYT Scotland in future which is an additional great outcome as we work towards finding positive destinations for these young people”

Nick Fleming, Chief Executive of OYT Scotland said: “We are excited to have young people from Scottish Sports Futures as part of the On Course with CashBack programme. OYT Scotland voyages offer young people a life changing opportunity, giving them a chance to take part in teamwork and leadership roles. These are transferable skills that can be used in other areas of their lives. This programme aims to develop young people and the group taking part in this voyage have demonstrated that it has been a success.  Our highly trained sea-staff (both professionals and volunteers) are able to get the best from each individual. The combination of engaged group leaders and focused sea-staff means that these young people can reach goals that they never thought possible, and this gives them a new outlook on life”.

Over the past 18 years, OYT Scotland has grown to become one of the leading sail training charities in the world. With two sail training vessels, Alba Explorer and Alba Venturer, OYT Scotland completed 55 voyages with 552 young people in 2016.

For more information about OYT Scotland go to

For more information on Scottish Sports Futures go to

For more information on the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities scheme go to



It is with sadness that we have said goodbye to our founding CEO, Ian Reid, who, after over 18 years of dedicated hard work has grown the charity to the success it is today.  We wish him well in his chosen retirement.

Exciting times are ahead with our new appointment of CEO, namely Pam Hunter.  Pam, originally born in Glasgow, comes back home after 20 years away.  She comes with a breadth of experience in both the private and voluntary sectors, is educated in leadership to MBA level and has volunteered in counselling and charity boards.  Her spare time is filled with sport at any opportunity.

Pam Hunter said:

“I am really excited and thrilled to be starting this position and look forward to working with a great team.  Everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy physical activity and get the life affirming benefits derived from it.  Our duty is to make this available to all young people across the length and breadth of Scotland.”

Charles Cormack, Chair said:

“This is a time of mixed emotions, with a sad farewell to Ian and an excited welcome to Pam.  After a rigorous recruitment process, Pam rose to the top.  We look forward to the future leadership Pam will bring to SSF with confidence”

ETC is now SCQF accredited in partnership with Glasgow Kelvin College at levels 4 and 5 –  Please see below the modules which are now accredited;

Working With Young People In Sport

Human Connection

Benefits Of Sport and Physical Activity


Goal Setting

Conflict Resolution

There will be more information coming out soon about the launch of this, however if you have any queries please do let us know by emailing

Refuweegee – How you can help!

Refuweegee is a community-led charity set up to ensure that all refugees arriving in Glasgow are welcomed to the city in true Glaswegian style.

Their aim is to provide every Refuweegee who arrives in the city with a community built welcome pack. Each pack will contain three categories of items; essentials, Glasgow welcome and ‘letters from the locals’ and as a result of the final category, each pack will be completely individual.


‘Letters from the locals’ are the heart and soul of the packs. These can be in the form of postcards, letters or post it notes, as long as the words are welcoming and kind then it’s what they’re looking for. These letters could also be used to advertise the programmes and free activities your organisation can offer to them.

Help Refuweegee to make sure that upon arrival in Glasgow people are left in no doubt as to their acceptance, their safety and their future. Write your letter today and drop it into any Oxfam store in Glasgow where you will find a Refuweegee drop box or post it to; Refuweegee, PO Box 7639, GLASGOW, G42 2HD.

Visit for more information.

StreetGames Fit & Fed Campaign – Get involved!

StreetGames are asking organisations from across Scotland and the wider UK to join in their Fit and Fed campaign.

Fit & Fed aims to tackle 3 main things that impact on our children and families who are most in need during school holiday periods: holiday hunger, isolation, and inactivity.  Research shows that 60% of families with an annual income of £25,000 can’t always afford food during the holidays, and families on less than £15,000 report a ‘constant struggle’.

StreetGames Scotland manager Ian Crawford said ‘School holidays are supposed to be a fun time of the year, but for a generation of children from low income families growing up in Scotland it isn’t. Children are isolated because there is no free activity programmes on offer, and they are at risk of going hungry because there are no free school meals’.

StreetGames are in the process of creating a Glasgow Fit & Fed HUB which aims to tackle this issue by bringing together a range of organisations including local community organisations, academics, retailers, businesses, food charities and community food providers.

Organisations that join the campaign are offered a range of support including fundraising support, free training and networking opportunities.

Anyone interested in joining the campaign should contact Ian Crawford on or call 07930816040.

ETC Resource – Judo Workbook Programme

The Girl’s Judo programme is keen to develop female coaches and volunteers, as well as increasing female participation in Judo. This approach has proven successful resulting in a 5% increase in female membership across 8 -15 year olds from the 4 initial club projects.  In 2016 a further 2 clubs were added to the initial batch resulting in six Girl’s sessions running over the 20 week period. With strong partnerships now formed by JudoScotland, Youth Scotland, Scottish Sport Futures & Ng Home the programme is heading towards continued growth. The success of the West of Scotland Programme has also led to the development of five more pilot female participation judo initiatives in the East of Scotland.

The sessions, developed from an award winning pilot, focus on physical movement similar to dance, introducing judo gradually to maximize engagement. Fully understanding that competing is not for everyone the judo classes ensure a learning environment incorporating workshops to encourage Health and Wellbeing, Cooking and Healthy Snacks, Internet Safety, Team building, Active Citizenship & Bullying.  These workshops are fantastic and ETC are now very lucky to offer ETC participants the workshop programme which they can then take activities from to use within sports sessions.  To view the workbook programme register online for an ETC course and once you have completed the course thyou can view this in post-course material!!!

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