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Clubs

Helping local clubs get started and develop.

Clubs are the backbone of sport in our community and Sports Development offers support and advice to ensure all clubs, new and established, can deliver a quality experience.

Our team can provide all the information required to start a new club, develop coaching, put the necessary quality and safeguarding procedures in place and create opportunities for individuals to take part from beginner to elite level.

    How we can help your club

    See below for how we can help.

    Sports Forum

    Ards and North Down Sports Forum exists to support the development, establishment and sustainability of local sports clubs.

    It is a voluntary organisation of the Sports Development team, affiliated sports clubs and organsations and associations based or delivering sport within the Ards and North Down borough.

    The role of the forum is to:

    • act as a consultative body between council and the sporting community
    • provide grants (see below) to support local sports organisations and athletes
    • inform its members about relevant sporting news
    • contribute to sports development in the area

    Joining the Sports Forum

    To access the help and support of the forum, clubs and organisations must be affiliated members.

    Affiliation runs from 1 April to 31 March with an annual fee of £25.

    Apply Here


    Sports Forum Meetings

    The Sports Forum holds quarterly meetings and monthly Working Group meetings to assess grant applications. The forum’s AGM is held in June.

    All forum members nominate a member to represent them at the meetings.

    2021 Meeting Dates

    Dates to be confirmed.

    Funding

    Funding is available to clubs through the annual Sports Forum Grant and Captial Grant Scheme.

    Both grants are managed by Sports Development. Further information on grants and making an application is available from the team by emailing: sportsdevelopment@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk

     Sports Forum Grant

    Please note: only the Gold Card grant is currently available.

    Sports Forum Grants are available annually to affiliated Sports Forum members. Funding can be applied for the following:

    • Coaching
    • Equipment
    • Seeding
    • Events
    • Anniversary
    • Travel and Accommodation
    • Gold Card

    Funding is available from 1 April to 31 March each year and grants can be applied for at any time during the year.

    Please note: Sports Forum Grants are only available to Sports Forum members who have been affiliated for a minimum of three months prior to application. Successful applicants must submit a report form detailing how their grant was used.

    Applicants should read the Guidance Notes fully before making an application.

    Apply

    Capital Grant Scheme

    Please note: this scheme is not currently available.

    In recognition of the need to invest in clubs and facilities to improve the quality of provision, Ards and North Down Borough Council provides a Capital Grant Scheme.

    Grants are available for capital expenditure such as facilities or equipment, defined as “expenditure for technical assistance and/or purchase, improvement, restoration and construction of an asset directly related to the applicant organisation”.

    Grants are available to sports clubs which must:

    • operate within the Ards and North Down Borough.
    • provide sporting activities recognised by Sport Northern Ireland, through the UK Sports Council’s recognition policy and be affiliated to a recognised governing body.
    • be engaged at amateur level.
    • provide evidence that they are Clubmark registered or have started the process.
    • be currently affiliated to the Ards and North Down Sports Forum.

    Each year Ards and North Down Borough Council provides grants for the forthcoming financial year (April to March) and can award up to 50% of eligible capital costs, with a maximum award of £5000 in respect of any one project.

    Application for Capital Grants are usually available in two tranches - May/June and September/October. This is dependant on available budget.

    Please read the Guidance Notes for full details on applying for a Sports Development Capital Grant.

    Apply

    Awards

    To recognise the success and achievements of local sporting individuals and teams, Sports Development runs annual Sports Awards. The winners are celebrated and recognised at an Awards Ceremony held in March.

    Awards are made to persons who have been involved in sport within the borough, in the following categories:

    Sports Person of the Year – Adult, under 18 and under 15
    Sports Team of the Year
    Sports Person of the Year under 18
    Junior Team of the Year – under 18s and under 15s
    Sports Coach of the Year
    Volunteer of the Year
    Lifetime Service Recognition
    Wall of Fame Inductee

    Nominations are sought from local clubs, schools, organisations and the general public in December with the winners selected by a judging panel. 

    Sports Awards 2020

    Due to the pandemic, Sports Awards will not be held in March 2021.

    Education Courses

    Sports Education Courses

    Our Sports Education programme for sports clubs, coaches and volunteers is delivered annually between the months of September and March. The programme includes courses which will help develop and enhance the skills and knowledge of personnel, enabling them to deliver their sport to the best possible standard.

    Community Sports Network Courses

    Working in partnership with the Community Sports Network, Sports Development are delighted to announce the release of three new online courses. Ards and North Down Borough Council’s Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) has partnered with the Council’s Sports Development department to help reduce anti-social behaviour through a new sports leadership programme that supports youth engagement.

    A free programme of online sessions will be delivered by the Community Sports Network to coaches, young trainee coaches and leaders of sports organisations – and with a limited number of places available, they are being encouraged to sign up before the programmes are oversubscribed.

    Course

    Date

    Time

    Target Audience

    To Register Contact

    Developing Resilient Young People

    Wed 17th Feb

    7pm-9pm

    Sports Coaches & Volunteers

    john@communitysportsnetwork.org

    Level1, Sports Leadership Award

    6week course: Wed 24th Feb, Wed 3rd,10th,17th, 24th & 31st March

    7pm-9pm

    Club members & Volunteers

    (Minimum Age 14yrs)

    john@communitysportsnetwork.org

    Using Sport As A Tool To Manage Challenging Behaviour

    Tues 30th March

    7pm-9pm

    Sports Coaches & Volunteers

    john@communitysportsnetwork.org

    Relevant course posters can be downloaded from the Download section below.

    Clubmark

    All clubs should strive to attain their governing body's available accreditation.

    In the absence of a governing body accreditation, clubs can attain Sport Northern Ireland's quality standard for sports clubs, Clubmark.

    Sports Development can help and advise sports clubs achieve Clubmark accreditation.

    Having Clubmark NI accreditation recognises your club as a safe, regarding and quality environment for participants of all ages to enjoy sport and stay involved throughout their lives.

    Details of Clubmark NI can be found on the Sports NI website

    If you would like more information about applying for Clubmark status please contact our team at: sportsdevelopment@ardsandnorthdown.gov.uk

    Sports Directory

    The Sports Directory is a comprehensive online guide to the sporting activities and clubs operating in the Ards and North Down area.

    It lists over 30 different sports and 135 sports clubs and organisations from across the borough and is an excellent point of reference for anyone wishing to join a local club.

    Clubs affiliated to the Sports Forum can be included free of charge in the directory. A £10 fee applies to unaffiliated clubs and organisations.

    Fill in the Registration Form to have your club included in the guide.

    Go to the Sports Directory

    Elite Athletes

    Funding is available to elite athletes from the Ards and North Down borough area through Gold Card membership of the local leisure facilities and grants for Travel and Accommodation.

    Gold Card applications are currently being accepted.

    Due to Covid-19, grants for travel and accommodation are not currently available.

    Resources