Established in 2016, St Madoes Active Sports Hub has been committed to providing people from the surrounding Carse of Gowrie area of Perth & Kinross access to physical activity and social opportunities.
Set up by St Madoes and Kinfauns Parish Church at the purpose-built Madoch Centre, the hub has become an integral part of the community's approach to delivering sporting opportunities local people of all ages and abilities can take part in.
Collaboration is integral to the provision of sessions, with partners including sportscotland, the local primary school, Perth & Kinross disability sport and local sports clubs and groups.
Sports on offer
The hub provides an extensive programme of activities suited to all ages and abilities catering for over 400 participants each week.
Funding allowed the hub to employ a full-time sports outreach worker, who has been instrumental in its success.
Community sport hub development officer Gemma Simpson said: “St Madoes Active Sports Hub really is a hub that should be celebrated for their commitment to their community and their willingness to cater for everyone.
"Sports outreach worker Jenny Tattersall is an absolute asset to the facility and drives the sports partnerships, as well as delivering a huge programme of activity and encouraging local people to get involved in volunteering to help the activities on offer to thrive.”
Activities include the first pre-school sport activity in the area, parents’ exercise classes incorporating a free creche and teen classes such as badminton and netball. There is also an exciting offering of daytime activities such as seated exercise for older adults, social aerobics and zumba.
The hub has worked hard to be further inclusive, with boccia sessions catering for people with a variety of disabilities as well as able-bodied.
The Madoch Centre operates a café facility which is popular with the local dementia/Alzheimers support group. Café guests expressed an interest in table tennis and from there weekly café table tennis sessions now take place.
St Madoes and Kinfauns Parish Church and the hub are thrilled that participants fitness is improving. Prior to hub opening, 40 adults aged 70 and over stated that they were not participating in organised exercise activities. Now more than 60 participants in this age group are taking part in activity each week.
The church sees its programme spread far wider than just physical activity, allowing people to grow in confidence and build connections with others, often bringing neighbours together for the first time.
Rev Marc Bircham, the Minister of St Madoes and Kinfauns Parish Church, said: “In Scotland, the Church has a long heritage in involvement in sport. In recent times we have lost sight of how good a vehicle sport can be in reaching out to others and in building community.
“Personally, I love attending as many of the classes as I can and have noticed a huge difference in my own fitness.”
The development of the skills of participants and volunteers has been another driver in its success, with young people and adult volunteers (an average of 15 a week) supporting all aspects of the hub programme and completing a wide range of coaching and leadership qualifications.
Twelve volunteers have recently achieved badminton leader awards, 14 completed in-house boccia training, five passed a boccia leader’s course and two passed the jog leader course.
Community sport hubs
St Madoes Community Sport Hub is a partnership between the following organisations:
- St Madoes & Kinfauns Parish Church
- St Madoes Primary School
- Pitfour Football Club
- Carse Canoe Club
- Glencarse Bowling Club
- Live Active Leisure
St Madoes Active Sport Hub is one of Scotland's 197 community sports hubs. The National Lottery-funded programme brings together sport clubs and community organisations who want to develop and grow the sporting offering in the community.