Starting A Club - Step 5 & 6

Step 5

Laying the Foundations

The following areas highlight the basics all clubs need to consider when laying down the foundations of a new club.

The Constitution

The constitution is a set of rules that set out how the club is governed and how it will be run.This will include information about the officers required to run the club, including when and how they will be elected. The club should be accessible to everyone and so it is important that the right culture is promoted. The club’s policies, practices and ethos should encourage all members to adopt an inclusive and child-friendly approach to Badminton.

The Committee

Clubs need some people to take on roles related to running the club. These people will form your club committee and should include as a minimum a Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Welfare Officer. There are many other roles that people can take on, such as helping to organise fixtures or social events. In your constitution you will set out how your club committee members are selected, this is normally done by voting for nominated people at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

The Finances

You will need to set your club fees to cover your running costs. The club fee should include any affiliation fees that you will need to pay and will probably be less for junior members.You may want to offer a variety of payment options to meet different players’ needs.You will need to set up a club bank account where fees can be paid in and bills can be paid out of! Your treasurer will manage the finances but it is important that the club accounts are available to club members. It is advisable for a minimum of two committee members to be assigned as signatories for the account.

Members

You will already know who your members are when you start up (identified in step 2); however it is important to have a method of recording their details. You might consider producing a ‘welcome pack’ for new members; this could include useful information about the club, for example training times, membership forms, competition programme, useful contacts. For junior members this will include parental consent forms and emergency contact details. This information should be stored securely and confidentially.

Step 6

Providing an attractive Badminton programme

Developing an interesting and enjoyable programme will help attract and retain people to your club. One example is our highly successful Teicnic Skills based Badminton Programme. The first thing you will need to focus on is putting the right programme together.This will depend on your members; you’ll need to decide whether to pitch your activities at new participants, juniors, seniors, social, competitive or performance. As your club grows, you may wish to develop a more coherent ‘player pathway’ to encourage progression from recreational or new players to more competitive levels of play. But do not forget that many of your members may still enjoy the social side of the club and the opportunity to make new friends.

Starting an after-school club and forging a link with the school is an ideal opportunity to encourage young people to play Badminton. Providing regular weekly sessions will allow children to have fun playing Badminton whilst developing their skills and maintaining an interest in the sport. Government research has found that after-school clubs help boost young people’s self-confidence and attitudes to learning and in some cases even improve attendances, punctuality and behaviour.

This experience may encourage young people to transfer to the community club environment.

Safeguarding Young People

Badminton Ireland is committed to creating and maintaining a safe and positive environment for all young people to play Badminton. This responsibility to safeguard the welfare of young people is shared with all affiliated organisations.

If your club has players under the age of 18 you should take some time to read and understand the Badminton Ireland Safeguarding and Protecting Young People Policy. This can be found on the Badminton Ireland website along with guidelines and a toolkit to help you to implement it. There is training available for the welfare officer in your club and guidance can be sought from the Badminton Ireland Childrens Officer Safeguarding team.

Coaching

Lots of clubs like to offer coaching to help their players to improve their game. There are a numbers of ways you can go about offering this facility:

Identify someone who has the appropriate knowledge and skills, and arrange for them to receive coach education in order to become qualified.