In September Team Bath Buccaneers began an ambitious programme to engage more state school children in hockey.
They have started a community outreach programme and after a period of discussion, started entering local primary schools to deliver hockey during the curriculum or as an after and pre school club.
Having advertised and identified a suitable candidate the services of a part-time coach was gained to carry out this role.
Mother of an under-12 state school pupil who has a passion for sport, Louise Stossich, now delivers eight hours a week curriculum hockey to several schools within the Palladian Trust in Bath.
Louise also takes pre and after school clubs to assist parents with childcare whilst building a relationship with the schools and local community. This project is fully funded throughout year 1 by local philanthropist and CEO of Profin David Medlock.
David is a keen believer in engaging the community and particularly the state sector in hockey and has been a great supporter of Team Bath Buccaneers for many years.
The hockey programme is in its infancy and currently being delivered to year 3 and 4 pupils but already the interest is mounting from other state primary and senior schools with a longer-term view to engage all year groups.
Louise and Director of Hockey at Team Bath Buccaneers, Keith Walters, are hoping that this early year’s engagement will lead to greater participation levels at club and more school and club based games and tournaments with an opportunity for all to see that hockey can be accessible and enjoyed by all regardless of social or economic background.
Walters added: “We are hoping that with the support of David and with the schools quite literally buying into this project, we can expand the small service currently on offer and make a sustainable full time pathway for all to access club hockey as they grow up.
“Already we have seen some young children who would normally not have access to hockey in school joining the club and engaging fully with our Junior Talent Centre programme. This is great to see and be a part of.”