Silver Club Mark Recognition - East Galway Celtics
December 11, 2020
Can you tell us a bit about your club?
East Galway Celtics was founded in 2017. We started with 50 members that January and grew to over 300 members during the 2019/2020 season. The sport has proven to be very popular in our area! We have members from U8 right up to U18, a league ladies team and social men and ladies basketball. Our greatest achievement to date has been obtaining the Basketball Ireland Bronze and Silver Club Mark and during our first season in Galway League we had two teams qualify for the B finals; one team winning and the other team runners up. It certainly exceeded our expectations at the time and very exciting for the entire club!
What challenges do you face in the club if any?
Our biggest challenge is securing qualified coaches. As the sport is so new to the area we are relying on people that played the sport when at school. We are very fortunate to have some members that played at a high level back in those days and they are fantastic, teaching new coaches the basics. We also established a key strategic partnership with a local men’s team; PCA. They have helped us establish the basic structures for operating the club, provided guidance and mentoring to the executive and provided some basics skills training to our coaches. PCA has competed at National level and has been a huge inspiration to our young members. This year, those players have become coaches within our club, seeing the value in investing in the community, the sport and developing the young players of the future.
What made you want to try and achieve the Basketball Ireland club mark?
East Galway Celtics have strived to establish the structures to sustain the club into the future. Obtaining these Bronze and Silver Marks is an acknowledgment of all of the work that was performed by volunteers. This proves that we have the necessary quality standards that ensure the safeguarding of our juveniles, consider health and safety at our facilities, consider the wellbeing of our members and our commitment to developing the sport in the area.
How did you find the Basketball Ireland Club Mark process?
The process was very straight forward. We were fortunate in that we had addressed many of the requirements but there is always room for improvement. The examples and templates provided during the process were fantastic. Improvements were made as a result of our review and implementation of the templates. The development officers involved in each review were very thorough in their evaluations, provided some excellent feedback and we're open to suggestions. We feel our documentation is more robust and sustainable while maintaining the values of our club.
What difference is the Basketball Ireland Club Mark going to make for your club?
We hope this will attract new members to our club as we now have a Quality Mark, demonstrating our commitment to our member's health, safety, wellbeing and our commitment to develop and welcome each member, regardless of their abilities.
Do you think you will engage with the club mark system and achieve all the way up to Platinum Club Mark? If so, what do you need to do to get your club to this stage?
Absolutely! We are new but very ambitious. Progressing through the stages of the Club Mark really helps to grow and develop the club by ensuring the correct structures are in place.
What are the goals for the season ahead?
Unfortunately, COVID-19 derailed all of our development plans for this season, but we will continue to train where possible. The health and safety of our members is paramount.
We will work towards achieving the Gold Mark next year and continue to grow and develop our club to be one of the best in the region.
What would you say to other clubs thinking about getting involved in the Basketball Ireland Club Mark?
I would strongly encourage it. Having these structures in place is so important to ensure you have stability and sustainability in your club.