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Community sport initiative grows from strength to strength


The Streetsport youth diversionary tactics initiative is entering its winter season with renewed vigour following a number of positive developments.

Streetsport Oct 2012In the space of mere weeks, the initiative has accepted a significant donation from a local Rotary club and has gained interest at a Scottish government level.

Streetsport, which was established in 2006, aims to lower levels of youth annoyance in Aberdeen city by engaging young people in productive and team-building activities. To be able to do this, it relies in part on donations from local organisations.

Members of the Rotary Club of Aberdeen St Fittick have donated £6,000 to Streetsport to be split over the next two years. The Rotary club, which comprises business people and residents from across the city, volunteer their time to raise money to support deserving causes in Aberdeen, north-east Scotland and overseas. They are actively involved in the Torry area where the club was first formed.

The £6,000 donation has been made on behalf of a former long-term member of the rotary club, Sandy Wilson of the William Wilson plumbing company.

Before passing away in November 2008, age 73, Mr Wilson spoke to his family about leaving a legacy in his will for the Rotary club to use for the benefit of youngsters through outdoor activities such as sport. Unfortunately he didn't have time to do this before he died but his family decided to fulfil his wishes by creating the Wilson Family Trust and asking the rotary club to arrange the donations.

Club President, Steve Williams, explained: “Our members are very active in identifying organisations and causes which they believe are deserving of either our time, or money from our fund raising activities. Earlier this year we became aware of the Streetsport scheme which we see as really helping young persons and their communities with the work they do and meeting the wishes of Sandy and his family.”

Streetsport development officer, John Duguid, who recently won the Outstanding Contribution to the Community Award at the Northsound Awards 2012, said:

“I am absolutely delighted to receive this donation on behalf of Streetsport from the rotary club. This two year commitment shows the confidence the club has in the work that we do across Aberdeen. The money will go toward the running cost of the project enabling us to deliver our sessions in multiple locations and to provide opportunities for youths to become involved with volunteering to become sports leaders.”

Soon after the donation was announced, the team behind Streetsport had further cause for celebration when it was met with national interest. On Friday 28 September, the team hosted MSPs Brian Adam, Kevin Stewart and Maureen Watt to explain the mechanisms and positive impacts of Streetsport.

This meeting followed from a similar visit earlier in the year when the team met with Scottish Minister for Commonwealth Games and Sport, Shona Robison MSP, as part of a Parliamentary inquiry on the topic of support for community sport.

At the heart of these discussions was how Streetsport – or something similar to it – could be rolled out across Scotland.

Cameron Craddock, Senior Lecturer in Communication Design who is a Streetsport Steering Committee Member, said: “This is an encouraging and exciting period for the project and we are delighted it is being recognised as a model example of how sport and design play a key role and have a positive impact within communities.

“We look forward to working further with those involved in the political field to explore the potential for Streetsport and other initiatives associated with reducing levels` of anti-social behaviour and encouraging inclusivity through sport, physical activity and creative endeavour.”

Further information on the Streetsport initiative including further sponsorship opportunities can be found at www.streetsport.org.  

Photo caption – A Streetsport session gets underway at the Kaimhill Astroturf

 (l-r) Young Streetsport attendees from the Garthdee area, John Duguid (Streetsport Development Officer), Steve Williams (president of Rotary Club of Aberdeen St Fittick).

Notes to editor

  • The Rotary Club of Aberdeen St Fittick was formed 40 years ago. Its work and support for good causes cover local, national and international activities including:

-          Local: Funding on of the Princes Trust teams in Aberdeen; contributing to Torry Academy field trip costs and mountain bike tuition for Torry Primary; and donating to Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS).

-          International: They work with a small Aberdeen charity, Kids Action, which has representation in Freetown the capital of Sierra Leone. They fund various projects including an initiative to provide goats to rural communities in the country.

 

  • The Streetsport initiative is run in collaboration with, and supported by Aberdeen City Council, Robert Gordon University, Grampian Police, Grampian Fire and Rescue Service, Aberdeen Safer Communities Trust, The Scottish Football Association, Aberdeen Sports Village, The Wilson Trust, Apache and Youthlink Scotland – Cashback for Communities.     

    Streetsport was established in 2006, aiming to bring sport and art directly to younger members of the community. In doing so, it sets out to promote a healthier lifestyle and alternatives to alcohol, drugs and antisocial behaviour.  

    Run in collaboration between Robert Gordon University’s sports facility, RGU: SPORT, Grampian Police, and a number of local partner agencies, the initiative now boasts an ever-growing portfolio of activities, including Street Football, Rugby, Basketball and Art.  

    Co-ordinated by John Duguid alongside associated assistants and volunteers, Streetsport owns two mobile pitches that are set up within communities including Torry, Northfield and Garthdee.

Andrew Youngson
Communications Officer | Faculty of Health and Social Care
Robert Gordon University

Schoolhill
Aberdeen
AB10 1FR
Tel: 01224 262389
Email: a.c.youngson@rgu.ac.uk