GAA Handball are delighted to today launch our "Summer Series 2021", a promotional and development campaign to help increase the visibility of Handball back in the publics eye, and for Handballers to have some fun and enjoy the game we have been deprived of for so long this past year.
As a primarily indoor sport, Handball can often go unseen to the general public, and unfortunately this has been even further emphasised during the pandemic. But now we are calling on all Handball Clubs and the entire Handballing community to come together and showcase our brilliant sport through a series of local and national led outdoor events.
We understand that certain Covid-19 restrictions are still in play, but there is still lots we can do as our sport recovers from its enforced closure. GAA Handball's full time staff will be on hand to provide help and advice as best they can, but we also need buy in and support from you, our members and lifeblood....so let's get to it together!
The Summer Series has 5 Key Strands:
1) Summer Shootout Tour (Dates TBC)
- A series of unique pop-up 1-day events at a number of outdoor locations to showcase Handball to to new parts of the country and the wider public.
- The shootouts will be positive, fun events, showcasing not just the skill levels but also the benefits of Handball for both young and old and how easy it is to take up as a sport.
- These tournaments will also incorporate a Have a Go / Coaching element where the top players will impart their skills and tips on any kids who wish to try handball, or who already play the game in the locality.
- We are on the lookout for suitable, quirky venue ideas so feel free to get in touch with your suggestions.
2) Summer Series Club Tournaments
- Do your part and run an outdoor event of your choice at local level. Grades, code, format all of your choice.
- The aim here is to encourage as many clubs as possible to run club tournaments outdoors in 1-Wall, 3-Wall or Softball and get our clubs up and running again.
- The grades/format/code will be entirely up to the club and new innovative formats will be encouraged.
- National Office will supply a support pack to the club to assist them in running the tournament.
- The applications to host club tournaments will be handled by the National Office and any club hosting a tournament will be provided with a risk assessment form to fill in to ensure compliance with covid regulations and insurance cover.
- Register your proposed event below
3) Open Days / Summer Camps / Training
- Has your Club ever thought about hosting an Open Day to attract new members? Or even a Summer Camp for juveniles over the holidays?
- We would be delighted to help you plan, and send out support packs.
- Contact email@example.com for details
4) Coaching Courses
- Register at the below link to host an official Coaching Course of any level and up skill Club members old and new.
- We are happy to run courses at Club, County or Provincial level & will be running reduced rates all summer. (£10/€15 for Foundation, £20/€30 for Level 1)
- Courses will delivered by our National Coach Developers, and will be hosted in outdoor venues (unless restrictions allow indoor delivery).
- Participants will receive certification upon completion of course.
- Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further queries.
5)“Any Ball Any Wall” County Challenge
- Challenging all County Handball Boards to increase visibility of our sport again.
- See how many new 1-Wall Courts you can get lined out/constructed in GAA Clubs, Skills Walls, Community Halls, Schools by the end of September. Prizes for top ranked County.
- This will be a "friendly" competition between County Handball Boards to identify outdoor spaces for one wall courts within their county to increase opportunities for people to play handball and also increase visibility of our sport.
- There will be a league table published with weighted points on offer for each court lined out/constructed/renovated.
- 20pts (GAA Club), 15pts (Old Outdoor Alley Renovated), 10pts (School), 5pts (GAA Handball Club / Community Hall / Other)
- There will be prizes on offer to the Counties/Clubs who have made the biggest effort at the end of the summer.
GAA Handball President Dessie Keegan spoke highly of the Summer Series:
"Hot on the heels of the enormously successful Youth Expo, GAA Handball have now developed a cool and innovative Summer Series. The challenge is simple, for all to go and have some fun! I look forward to seeing some familiar faces back on the courts and I am particularly excited about seeing new Handballers grace the courts for the first time."
GAA Handball National Manager John Kelly also commented:
"I am delighted to welcome this exciting new Summer Series initiative that aims to get people out and playing handball again and make Handball more visible over the summer months. We have the perfect outdoor game and this series aims to maximise the enormous potential of Handball as a recreational sport, to attract new members and to showcase the benefits of Handball to a wider audience. I am confident that despite the unpredictability of the Irish weather, this can be an incredibly positive venture for GAA Handball and one that will inject some much-needed positivity and fun back into our sport following what has been a difficult period for all involved in Handball. I urge all our members to support this initiative to ensure it is a success and to get Handball moving in a positive direction again.”
National Development Officer Darragh Daly will be Project Lead on the Summer Series and is excited about the potential it offers.
"I see so much potential growth for our game through both outdoor and recreational play. Handball is such a simple game to play, yet hugely impressive when played by the elite. I have seen first hand how addictive and enjoyable new players to the game find it, often hooked from the first strike of the ball. I can't wait to see the Handball community roll behind this project, have some fun, and do their part to bringing our game back to the publics eye."
Further details and literature for each of the Summer Series strands will be released in the coming days.