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  • Writer's pictureCity Of Sheffield

Junior Summer Camp

Updated: Nov 10, 2021

In August 2021, the club held it's first ever Junior Summer Camps. Two camps were run over separate weeks a turned out to be a complete success.

This was only achieved by the hard work and dedication of the volunteers of the club who had been making preparations since March 2021, when it was decided that it should be a priority of the club to make rowing more accessible and inclusive to the youth of Sheffield. The aim of the camp was not primarily to raise funds for the club, but rather to increase the profile of rowing and provide opportunities for Young People, ensuring that the monies raised would be ring-fenced as an access fund for young people and adults who wish to engage but for whom the cost is prohibitive.

Both weeks booked up fast and over the two camps there were 11 girls and 18 boys who partook. Of these 9 juniors had rowed before including 5 who were already part of CSRC and 4 who had only indoors experience. 13 juniors were 11-13 years old, 12 were 14 & 15 year old's and 4 were 16-17yrs.

After pooling ideas the core planning team designed morning only sessions where the group of 14 spilt into 2 teams essentially allowing 2 water-based session (quads and singles) and 1 land based egro session. The mornings were top and tailed by intros/H&S briefings and de-briefs with a break for snack in-between. However, when it was clear what age and ability, of those that had signed up it was decided to re-arrange the format slightly to allow 1 group to do quads and another to do both ergos and singes in 1 session. This increased the amount of time on the water and the way to shape the groups and demonstrated the dynamic approach that the core planning team adopted in devising the camp.

After each camp a feedback survey was sent to juniors and parents. The summary from this survey was that everyone had a great time! Out of 5 juniors scored 5 and 4.7 respectively for Camp 1 and 2 for how much they enjoyed it, 4.7 and 4.3 for how much they learnt about rowing and 4.7 each for feeling safe.

A big thank you from the club goes out to all its volunteers over the week, including Jodi, Viki, Megan, Rosie, Chris, Kate, Alex, Eli, Olly, Alice, Maggie, Rachel and Josephine. You're all stars!

Lots of feedback was provided from the juniors, their parents and the training team in terms of how future camps could be run differently. The concluding sentiment from the washup meeting at the end of the process was that whatever future rowing camps are delivered it is important that the whole club are aware and supportive of the aims and objectives, whether this is growing and developing junior rowers or creating a safe and inclusive space for young people who are normally excluded from rowing due to cost, race, access etc.

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