Save our Smiles Campaign

Ulster GAA, in partnership with The Irish News, launched the Save our Smiles campaign in support of the NSPCC Parents in Sport week, which takes place on this week 2nd – 8th October 2017. It is widely acknowledged that GAA parents play a pivotal role in encouraging and supporting their child’s participation, success and fun when engaging in Gaelic games and activities and without their input many of our clubs would cease to function effectively. To celebrate and raise awareness of the important role parents play in our clubs, Ulster GAA are encouraging all our constituent units to join us in supporting Parents in Sport, through our Save our Smiles campaign which focuses on the positive role that parents play in helping young people reach their full potential.

 

Children take greater enjoyment from participating in sports if their parents are positively involved. They are also more likely to continue playing the sport for longer and have more opportunities to reach their sporting potential. It is important that parents reflect on their own behaviour when their child is participating in sport, ensuring that their support having a positive impact on their child’s progression, development and enjoyment of the sport.

Parents are key stakeholders in all clubs, the contribution they can make to our games and activities is invaluable, particularly at underage level and in the day to day running of the club from washing team kits through to transporting players, assisting with teams, fundraising and beyond. Therefore, it is vital that all of our clubs embrace parental involvement in the club in a positive way and that channels of communication between the club, its volunteers and Parents are working as effectively as possible from the very start. We encourage all our clubs to support parents and encourage that they engage with their child’s GAA activities in a positive way. Informing parents that you are responsive and open to their ideas can help to ensure that everyone involved has an enjoyable experience.
There are a number of ways in which your club can participate and build on what was a very successful campaign last year.

1. Display promotional posters of the Save our Smiles Campaign in key locations throughout clubrooms, and online through your social media channels.
2. Value parents contribution to your club, encouraging their participation in various appropriate roles within the club.
3. Ensure all parents and carers sign up to your code of behaviour and that all policies and procedures are clearly communicated at the beginning of each year.
4. Designated Spectators areas located away from the field of play are an effective way to discourage unacceptable behaviour.
5. Promote Positive behaviour and deal with unacceptable behaviour as soon as possible in order to prevent it from continuing.

Your club can download the Save our Smiles pledge for parents to sign & enter a competition to win a set of jerseys for your club from http://www.irishnews.com/offers/smiles/
For further information please contact Bernie Fox Bernie.fox.ulster@gaa.ie or 02837521900.