Blog

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.