In partnership with the European Volleyball Confederation (CEV), Scottish Volleyball have introduced the #NETSETGO programme with the aim of growing school volleyball across the nation.
The #NETSETGO programme was introduced to help bring volleyball to a new and younger demographic, focusing primarily on primary school pupils and teachers. In the first year the programme has been rolled out in Lanarkshire, Edinburgh and Perth & Kinross.
Supported by the CEV’s Erasmus funding, the programme provides schools with nets, balls and other essential equipment to make volleyball more accessible to those in these identified areas.
Lynne Beattie OLY, Scottish Volleyball's regional development officer (East), said: “The project has given us a great platform from which to promote our sport within the school environment in Scotland.
"It also increased our profile within European volleyball, showcasing some of the great work that we do.”
Backing up investment
However, Scottish Volleyball didn’t just want to provide the equipment to the schools and leave them to their own devices. Scottish Volleyball were looking to create something bigger. To build a sustainable level of growth within the sport.
To do this, Scottish Volleyball introduced support for the recruitment of a local development officer (LDO) to lead project delivery in each of three targeted regions.
The new LDOs were also supported by over 40 young leaders who played a role in the organisation and delivery of the #NETSETGO project. Lynne is in no doubt as to the importance of this newly developed workforce.
She said: “This has allowed us to build a sustainable strategy around these areas to target the gaps in school participation and build upon the club pathways.
"The main challenge that we have been able to address is building a sustainable workforce to ensure that after our initial engagement with the schools, they are able to continue going forward.”
The next steps
The project has already engaged more than 450 primary age students and delivered volleyball festivals, talent days, master classes and even teacher training across 20 schools in the three identified local authorities. The CEV visited the project in March 2019, witnessing some of the work in action.
With this success, Scottish Volleyball are now looking towards next year. The #NETSETGO project was originally aimed at being a four-year project – and in year two, they are looking to target another three local authorities. Lynne is clear on the project's future aims.
She said: “Going forward we hope to replicate this project in six other areas across the country by year four, to ensure that all geographical areas in Scotland are supported at grassroots level, ultimately growing the sport from the ground up.”
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