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Club Development Conference 2017

18/11/2017 to 19/11/2017

As a way to better support SCA Affiliated Clubs, the Focus Club Conference that was held in November 2016, is now going to be rolled out for all clubs to attend - for free. The aim of the weekend is to help clubs to be become even better at what they are already doing not just from attending the workshops but also networking with other clubs and sharing experiences and knowledge. 

We hope you'll be able to join us for this action packed weekend!

When: 18th and 19th of November - beginning at 1000hrs on the Saturday and finishing by 1630hrs on the Sunday

Where: sportscotland offices, Caledonia House, 1 Redheughs Rigg, Edinburgh, EH12 9DQ

Who: All SCA Affiliated Clubs can up to 3 representatives, either for the full weekend, or per day. If more representatives from a club want to come, please contact Roger Homes:

What: There are a wide variety of workshops available that are aimed at the club committee or members representing the committee. The workshops will be delivered by a range of experts from across sport, for example representatives from GB Sport, sportscotland, Towergate Insurance and SCA staff.

Cost: There is no cost for attending the conference, and lunch/refreshments are provided on both days. Travel and overnight accomodation is not provided. 

Register: Places are limited, so registration for the weekend is essential. Please register your attendance here. Full weekend attendance is not essential, if you can only come on one day then please let us know when you register. If you have any questions at all, please contact Roger Holmes: Any cancellations must be made at least 7 days in advance; failure to notify us of a cancellation or in the case of a no show, the club will be charged £50. 


Club representatives can choose from 12 different workshops to attend over the two days. Workshop descriptions are detailed below, however the overall schedule is:

Saturday Sunday

10am Arrival, Welcome & Introductions

Workshop Session A - choice of either: 

  • 1. Choosing the right legal status for your Club, or 
  • 2. Planning for a Successful Future

Workshop Session B - choice of either:

  • 3. Recruiting & Retaining Members, or 
  • 4. Equality & Inclusion in Sport

Workshop Session C - choice of either:

  • 5. Marketing for Clubs, or 
  • 6. Developing Facilities

Final Group Session: Club Case Studies - Sharing Practice 

Finish by 5pm

9-9.30am Arrival 

Workshop Session D - choice of either: 

  • 7. Developing Paddler Pathways, or
  • 8. Managing Club Membership Online & Data Protection

Workshop Session E - choice of either: 

  • 9. Insurance, or
  • 10. Recruitment & Development of Coaches & Volunteers

Workshop Session F - choice of either:

  • 11. Safeguarding in Clubs & PVG, or
  • 12. Standard Operating Procedures in Clubs

Final Group Session: Club Case Studies - Sharing Practice 

Finish by 4.30pm

1. Choosing the right legal status for your Club

The legal status of a sports club has a significant impact as to whether the members are personally liable for a club’s actions and/or debts.
Clubs can choose to be unincorporated or incorporated and it is vital that a club considers the choices available and selects the most appropriate status for its circumstances.
This one and a half hour interactive workshop details what legal status is and details the five options available to a not for profit sports club, including what is involved in converting the club to a new status.
We detail the types of club that should consider incorporating, based on their activities and competency in areas such as risk assessment and paying for services.
Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:
  • Have a thorough understanding of what legal status is and why it is fundamentally important in terms of protecting the members from personal liability
  • Know the choices available and have a good working knowledge of the advantages and disadvantages of each status
  • Know which club activities have an impact on the choice of legal status
  • Understand the ongoing legal obligations of each status and the procedures to follow to change status

2. Planning for a successful future

This workshop looks at producing a development plan that helps Clubs to move forward in a constructive way. The workshop will help Clubs to consider;

  • Where they are
  • Where they are going
  • How to get there
  • Who is accountable
  • How will we know when we are there
  • The one page plan

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will have an understanding of how to produce a simple Club development plan.


3. Recruiting & Retaining Members

We all know that word of mouth is a powerful tool any organisation can take advantage of but it’s one that we have to earn by providing exceptional customer service – when our existing members love what we do, they will tell everyone they know.
All sports organisations have customers, albeit they may be referred to by other titles such as member, pupil, etc. and it is particularly important for not for profit organisations to be aware that they must ensure their members gets the best service possible.
This workshop details just why this is so important for the profitability/sustainability of an organisation and explores the ways each person in an organisation can ensure they always have the needs of the member in mind.
Learning Outcomes 
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:
  • Have a thorough understanding as to what we mean by exceptional customer service and why it is important
  • Know how to think like a customer and why the customer is not always right
  • Understand what it means to deliver great service as an individual and a team
  • Appreciate the importance of first impressions and how to deliver a great one
  • Know how to find out what they want and expect and how to exceed their expectations
  • Have access to practical guides for reinforcing daily best practice
  • Know how to monitor and assess the service provided 

4. Equality & Inclusion in Sport

This workshop looks at:
  • Examples of what SCA clubs, committees and groups are already doing to make our sport as accessible as possible and to encourage greater participation
  • The Equality Act and how it applies to clubs and the SCA - the responsibilities it places on us
  • The Scottish Government’s and sportscotland’s priorities in terms of making the “inactive” to be “active” and attempting to remove real/perceived barriers to participation for under-represented groups
Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:
  • Have an awareness and appreciation of the responsibilities placed on us by the Equality Act
  • Know about the work already undertaken to encourage greater participation and remove barriers to people taking up paddlesport
  • Be able to apply knowledge gained to their own club environment - to help the club’s development

5. Marketing for Clubs

This interactive workshop outlines how a club can plan and implement an effective marketing strategy to retain its existing members and attract new ones.
It explains how to adopt a simple step by step approach which starts by explaining how to ensure the existing members keep coming back, how to find out what members want, and how to ensure that the club has the right people in place to deliver a quality service and programme.
As well as case studies and practical examples, the workshop provides delegates with a wealth of free resources that can be used to professionalise the club’s marketing efforts.
Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:
  • Have a thorough understanding as to what motivates people to join a sports club and how to match services to these needs
  • Have a simple step by step template to use to create a simple marketing plan for the intended target market, with practical examples of the type of content required
  • Have a thorough understanding of the types of ‘first impression’ a customer may have of the club and how to ensure their first experience is a positive one
  • Be able to create and implement a simple plan to outline the customer’s expectations of the club and determine easy ways in which to ensure their expectations are exceeded
  • Have a thorough understanding of the people skills needed to deliver great customer service and how to effectively recruit the necessary skills
  • Have access to a wealth of free marketing tools and processes that will save time and money 

6. Developing Facilities including funding & planning

This workshop will look at the processes that clubs should go through when they are considering build club facilities and the order in which they should do them. It will also look at sources of funding available to clubs. 

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:

  • To plan their project in a logical order
  • Have awareness of funding opportunities
  • Be aware of some of the pitfalls
  • Know where to look for funding 
  • Have an understanding of filling in a funding application

7. Developing paddler pathways

This workshop is designed to help committees look at building a pathway within their club - whether this is a competition pathway, a paddler progression within a recreational club or a coach and/or leader development. 

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:

  • Understand what a pathway consists of and how it translates to their club/environment.
  • Understand what would be the benefit of clarifying the pathway in their club 
  • Be capable to engage with the design of the pathway within their club to suit the individual club needs

8. Managing Club Records & Data Protection

This workshop will introduce the SCA’s new Go Membership system that replaces the previous Self-service system. The workshop is aimed at Club Secretaries and Membership Secretaries to help them adapt to the new system for recording club member records. The workshop will also cover the principles of data protection. 

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:

  • Be able to add, renew, link and delete club members from their club. 
  • They will also be able to download various membership reports to help manage and analyse club membership. 
  • Understand the 8 Data Protection Principles 

9. Insurance and Trip Planning

This workshop is in two parts. The first section will be presented by Towergate who are the insurers for British Canoeing and the SCA, and therefore the insurance providers for Affiliated Clubs. This will allow attendees to better understand what is and isn’t covered through their insurance. Towergate insure both SCA individual members, affiliated club members as well as offering boat insurance to those that take this option in addition to their SCA membership. 
The second section will be a combined Q&A session and a look at how clubs plan trips while remaining within the insurance parameters. 

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:

  • Have gained a better understanding of what the insurance covers both as an SCA member and affiliated club
  • Had the opportunity to put forward individual questions


10. Recruitment and development of coaches & volunteers

This workshop is to help clubs look at how they can recruit, develop and support their most valuable resource, volunteers and coaches. There will be the opportunity to share your own good practice with others and pick up new ideas. The workshop is aimed at people who have a responsibility for recruiting, developing and retaining coaches, such as coaching coordinators, volunteer coordinators, committee leads, head coaches, manager of coaches. As well as those sports club representatives who may have a role in the recruitment, support & development and recognition & reward of club volunteers that the club needs to develop, manage, administrate and lead their club.

Learning Outcomes
By the end of the workshop, delegates will be able to:
•       identify methods and good practice to recruit coaches and committee members
•       recognise the importance of developing & supporting coaches and committee members and explore the tools to use
•       recognise the importance of recognition and reward and explore tools to do this 
•       understand that the sports workforce can be retained by implementing all of the above

11. Safeguarding in Clubs

This hour long workshop supports clubs to put child protection policies into practice. It is most suitable for those acting as the club child protection officer, but is also relevant for those responsible for managing or organising the club. Participants attending this workshop should have first attended a basic awareness course in child protection such as the sportscoach UK ‘Safeguarding & Protecting Children’ workshop or equivalent.

Learning Outcomes
On completing the workshop, the delegates will:

  • Understand the committee's Safeguarding responsibilities
  • Understand the procedures they should undertake in order to keep children safe

12. Standard Operating Procedures in Clubs

This workshop is designed to help clubs reflect on their current practices, and then to produce Standard Operating Procedures and risk assessments to help them maintain a safe environment. This will assist clubs to achieve the updated requirements for club affiliation that are intended to help continually improve safety standards within paddlesport.

Learning Outcomes

  • Delegates will understand the need for risk assessments and Standard operating procedures
  • Delegates will be able to produce Standard Operating Procedures and risk assessments for their clubs