Parents in Sport Week (PISW) 2018: 1st - 7th October 2018

Parents are key to a child’s life-long involvement in sport.  The Irish Pony Club and Horse Sport Ireland have joined forces with more than 100 sports organisations in Ireland and the UK to promote Parents in Sport Week. This is a great opportunity to promote and underscore the positive, supporting role that parents play.  Coaches and officials can also examine their communication with parents to benefit children’s involvement in sport.

Feedback from current sports stars and research with young people shows how important parents are as role models.  Dr. Una May, Director of Participation & Ethics with Sport Ireland, says “Parents play and integral role in the development of their children’s involvement in sport. It’s very important for sports clubs and coaches to take the time to encourage parental input into club activities, show they value parents, and are grateful for what parents can do”.

Dr Camilla Knight of Swansea University who studies parental involvement in sport says, “Parents play a critical role within youth sport. Without their support and involvement youth sport could not exist in the way it does today”.

However we all know of ‘over enthusiastic’ or ‘demanding’ parents which subsequently can affect a children’s experience.  Through Parents in Sport Week, the NSPCC are helping to change the conversation and remind everyone of the important and extremely valuable contribution parents make to our sport but only if they are engaged appropriately.

Parents are important to sport because they can:

  • encourage their children to take up, enjoy, and achieve in their sport
  • support their children in practical ways – such as by providing transport or buying kit
  • become coaches, helpers and volunteers within the club
  • provide positive role models for children through their own behaviour
  • help out with things such as club websites and fundraising
  • support and motivate their child and the team
  • reinforce positive aspects of sports participation

Through Parents in Sport Week, the NSPCC hope to highlight the essential role parents have to a child’s enjoyment and success in playing sport.

Aims of Parents in Sport Week

1. Ensure parents recognise their role in keeping children safe in sport

It’s a big decision for parents to leave their child in the care of someone else. We’re asking sports organisations to provide the information that parents need to make an informed choice about the club or activity their child attends and what to do if they have a concern.

2. Help parents understand how to positively influence their child’s enjoyment and wellbeing in sport

We’re encouraging parents to look at how their behaviour and involvement influences their child’s enjoyment of sport, through the resources on our website.

Sports will be asked to help create a positive environment for children and parents in sport by having a no tolerance policy on poor parental behaviour.

3. Encourage clubs to engage and involve parents in their child’s sport

This is a chance for clubs and coaches to showcase their creativity, and show us how they will engage directly with parents. Why not try something new. It could be an event for parents, or a change in policy that ensures parents are more involved in the sporting lives of their children.

The NSPCC has produced resources for clubs to use with parents and their own coaches. These are available at the cpsu.org.uk/parents.  

Whether it’s driving kids to rallys or training, preparing team snacks, organizing events, or providing a listening and supportive ear, parents play an essential role in supporting their children in sport and activity.  Here are a number of ways that your Branch can get involved in Parents in Sport Week 2018 and recognise the important role that parents play within your Branch. 

Five Ways to Get Involved
With PISW 2018 just around the corner, here are some suggestions of how you can get involved:

Be sure first of all to sign up here, if you haven’t already done so!

  • hold a special parents event – this could be anything from a social event to a parents training session. NSPCC have created a draft downloadable invitation for you to use.
  • take a look at the wealth of information on the NSPCC parents in sport resource page, including an email signature you can use and a template presentation on promoting positive parental involvement in your club
  • tell us what you’re up to on Twitter or Facebook - share your PISW stories.  Make sure you include the hashtags #involvingparents and #ParentsinSportWeek2018
  • watch and share our positive sports parents videos for important messages about the benefits of parental involvement in sport
  • to show your support and share the campaign with others, visit othe @thecpsu twitter feed or, during the week itself, visit the Irish Pony Club and NSPCC Facebook page and like/share the infographics and other resources about the week.

We hope you will join us in supporting Parents in Sport Week 2018 and use the following hashtags next week:

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