Mark Gallacher's Badminton Legacy

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Mark Gallacher's Badminton Legacy

Mark Gallacher coaching
See Mark Gallacher's sporting journey offering badminton sessions to young people
01/05/2014

Background to Project

Mark started his sporting journey at North Glasgow College as a student within the HNC Sports Coaching course. Through the partnership between Badminton Development, Active Schools and the College, students are given the opportunity to complete sport specific coach education and deliver fun badminton sessions to local primary school children. Mark completed his entry level qualification and duly delivered his sessions within the local cluster. From there he progressed to HND Sports Coaching and took the next step on the badminton coaching pathway, successfully completing UKCC level 1 and deploying his new found skills within after school clubs within the Springburn area.

Action Taken

Mark demonstrated considerable skills as a young badminton coach and was invited to coach sessions with disengaged young people within the City as part of the CashBack for Communities programme. Mark had been deployed to the Cranhill area of the city and experienced major behavioural issues from young people and their parents including threatening and violent behaviour towards centre staff and each other, bringing alcohol into the centre, vandalism and theft. Despite these problems Mark maintained his enthusiasm for the sport and for the area and continued to encourage the young people to attend the centre on a weekly basis.

Outcome Achieved through officer support

When the Cash Back programme ended in 2011 Mark wanted to continue to support the young people who enjoyed the sport and through support from Glasgow Sport and Active East has set up the former Cashback session as an affiliated junior badminton club at the Cranhill Beacon. The club offers weekly badminton sessions to local children and young people and through his passion and enthusiasm Mark has also encouraged parents from Cranhill to be involved with the club committee and take ownership of the club for the benefit of local children.

Quotes & Stats

 “As a youth and someone who was brought up in the east-end of Glasgow, I grew up without the opportunity to participate in any form of sport that didn't require me to travel to other areas out with my comfort zone or pay out a small fortune to simple participate in a one hour session. There were no local clubs, with motivated coaches that encouraged me and other local youths to participate in sport, get fit or provide them (me) with the life skills that could then be carried into other aspects of life. Where I was brought up there was also an asbo placed on my area by the local authorities in order to tackle youth crime meaning I could not walk my own streets after 8 o'clock at night. Personally, I believe that the greatest tool is prevention and if we want to capture the attention of an individual we as coaches need to offer youths an opportunity that others have failed to provide. This is my motivation for sport. I want to encourage those individuals, when others have given up; as I believe that with the right inspiration ANYONE can achieve their ambitions. Aim high.
 
“The badminton club in Cranhill was a challenge from day one, and even though others have failed to see the benefit of having the club in such a confrontational environment, I seen this as an opportunity for myself to inspire those individuals as well as the local community to better themselves. As it stands today, we have an average of 15-20 kids attending weekly sessions and parents are now involved in our club committee, with clubs names, logos and fund raising ideas involving the local community now been discussed, signs of encouragement ahead. Children are also attending sessions with their own badminton equipment and they are asking about community and junior tournaments that they want compete within in the near future. The transformation of the participants, the club and the local community has been of great success and I believe that we as coaches are achieving the success that we long desired for within this particular area. With continual motivation and inspiration from myself and other coaches, I believe we can achieve something special, something that Cranhill has not had the opportunity to claim, properly, in sometime."
Mark Gallacher
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