Three Community Champions Revealed as Awards Finalists

August 30, 2018

Recognised for their extraordinary dedication to their local communities, three of Scotland’s top performing sporting initiatives have been named as finalists for Community Hub, Club or School of the Year at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards on 13 September.

Awarded to the Community Sport Hub, Club or School which has made the most progress and impact on their community over the last year, the award attracted dozens of nominations across a wide range of sporting pursuits and from every region of Scotland. Impressing the judges with their innovation and ambition, SAPC Community Sports Hub, Tryst Community Sports Hub & Larbert High School and Team East Lothian Athletics Club will now go head to head for the top award supported by Active Scotland.

SAPC Community Sports Hub was created to provide free sport, help embrace diversity and improve the lives of young people and their families in and around Darnley, Greater Pollok and the surrounding areas of Glasgow South. The hub promotes healthy lifestyles and aims to reduce nuisance crime, isolation and negative behaviours through community engagement in sport. There is a big emphasis on creating opportunities, particularly for young people, with half of the committee aged 18 years or under.

In 2017 and 2018, the Hub delivered two fantastic EU Erasmus+ Sport projects involving 1600 participants in Glasgow and SAPC volunteers also visited Italy and Romania to lend their support to other events within the programme. The hub delivered free sport sessions to 500 participants during schools ‘health week’ and the Pro Community Festival, as well as more than doubling membership of their Netball club to 70 participants. New introductions have included four weekly multi-sport clubs for girls, family cycling, football fives for 12-17 years & Bounce Back to Netball that has enabled the hub to significantly increase weekly user activity.

Tom Buik, Founder of the SAPC Hub said: SAPC is honoured to be shortlisted at the ‘World Cup’ of Scottish sport awards. It is fabulous recognition for all our partners and volunteers. Our approach is simple but effective – bringing people together through sport.”

Tryst Community Sports Hub and Larbert High School are key partners, intertwined in providing pathways for over 4,500 young people. Their motto ‘For Young People by Young People’ allows the programme to thrive, utilising young people as leaders and role models in the local community. Their award winning pupil leadership programme has resulted in over 200 young people achieving coaching or leadership qualifications and putting these into action, with Larbert High School pupils delivering holiday camps to over 750 participants and leading the P5 swimming programme as qualified swim coaches and lifeguards.

Sport has become a way of life in the local community with 76% of young people involved in extra-curricular activity across 20 affiliated clubs, and there has been a 10 fold increase in girls’ participation. In addition, four ‘Schools of Sport’ have been set up including Wheelchair Basketball and over 2000 voluntary hours have been logged in the last year.

Jon Reid, Rector at Larbert High School, said: “We are thrilled to be shortlisted for this prestigious award and delighted that the phenomenal work carried out by our staff, young people and team of volunteers is being recognised.  We have worked really hard over the last few years to further embed the work of the Hub within our school and local community and are very proud of the significant pathways, coaching and leadership opportunities available to our young people.  Hundreds of young people benefit on a weekly basis from our joint efforts and our drive and determination to keep going is fuelled by our core belief that mental, social, emotional and physical wellbeing should be at the centre of everything that we do as a school and as a Hub.”

Team East Lothian Athletics Club are a unique, successful and modern athletics club delivering diverse athletics and physical activity opportunities to an increasingly wide audience. In the last 12 months a targeted approach has included introduction of a disability section and full integration of these athletes into training and events; an adult recreational running programme; a junior athletics programme delivered in seven communities in East Lothian involving over 120 youngsters on a weekly basis and including pre-school aged children for the first time; an athletics camp and programme for Looked After Children (Foster & Care Home); an Access Fund especially targeting those facing social barriers helping them to get involved in physical activity and sport; and training targeted at young people with a wider local workforce development programme for officials, coaches and volunteers.

In performance terms the club have multiple district, national and international medallists and representatives – leading the way is Maria Lyle who has recently added gold at the European Championships to medals at both the Commonwealth Games in 2018 and the World Athletics Para Championships in 2017. Additionally Team East Lothian now deliver their own year round events programme for their members and the Club links directly to schools events and activity, providing a clear pathway.

Chairman of Team East Lothian, Graham McPheat, said: “It’s fantastic to hear that Team East Lothian Athletics Club is shortlisted for a Team Scotland Award.  Team East Lothian aims to inspire, engage and support our whole community to improve health and wellbeing through athletics.  Being shortlisted gives us a fantastic opportunity to raise the profile of the work the club does and promote sport as a vehicle for change.”

Paul Bush OBE, Chair, Commonwealth Games Scotland said: “Community Hubs, clubs and schools play a vital role right at the heart of Scottish sport, making a huge contribution to the nation’s health and well-being as well as providing a clear path into recreational and competitive sport. The phenomenal dedication of our finalists to their communities deserves recognition and they should be rightly proud of their achievements over the past year.”

The Community Hub, Club or School of the Year award is supported by The Scottish Government’s Active Scotland Division, whose aims include encouraging and enabling an active lifestyle for all, supporting well-being and resilience in communities and improving opportunities to participate, progress and achieve in sport.

Winners across all categories will be crowned at the Team Scotland Scottish Sports Awards in a star-studded celebration of Scottish sport on 13 September at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

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