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Invite to RYA Midlands Affiliated Clubs Conference

One-stop shop for expertise to plan the season ahead

The RYA Midlands Affiliated Clubs Conference is fast approaching and will provide a great starting point for sailing clubs across the region to plan their 2016-17 season.

All RYA Affiliated Clubs are invited to the free conference at the Landau Forte Academy in Tamworth on Saturday 19 November, where they can hear all the latest information about the Sport England strategy and find out how they fit into the bigger picture.

Clubs will be able to network and share best practice and learn how to use all the expertise available through RYA affiliation to maximise the benefits for their members.

The conference will welcome delegates from 9.30am and start at 10am. The first session, led by Vernon Herten-Ash, RYA Deputy Chair, will cover the government’s Strategy for Sport, Sport England Strategy, and how these affect clubs. RYA department heads will explain how they can support clubs with their aims.

Following a networking break the next session will present findings and case studies from the Club Membership Census, a Sailing Club Membership Consumer Research Project, and the Vital Signs Survey, which invited clubs to share information across a range of issues in 2016. Breakout groups will encourage clubs to consider any changes they might want to make in their activities for the future.

Club development workshops after lunch will cover a variety of topics: increasing club membership; staying out of court (duty of care, insurance and risk assessments); increasing participation in racing; how to make better use of the PY system and what support is available with race management and rules; and a meeting for cruising clubs.

In addition, industry experts SocialB will run workshops on increasing membership through your website and using Facebook to increase activity.

Club development clinics meanwhile will give delegates a chance to book 10-minute one-to-one slots with various RYA reps to ask questions, including:

  • Gus Lewis, RYA Legal & Government Affairs Manager - legal issues, leases, insurance and governance matters for your club.
  • Debbie Blatchford, RYA Sailability Manager – making your club more accessible, becoming a Sailability Club, and opportunities to develop your Sailability club.
  • Chris Blackburn, RYA Midlands High Performance Manager - developing your junior racing club and developing your existing and potential race coaches.
  • Tom Walker, RYA Technical Coordinator - including PY returns for your club and how to optimise PY numbers for your club.
  • Jackie Bennetts, RYA Clubs Advisor - Push The Boat Out, Volunteer Awards, RYA Affiliation and the Membership Census.
  • Conor Swift, RYA Membership Development Manager - setting up RYA Joining Point, becoming an RYA member, and the new RYA membership structure.
  • Gareth Brookes, RYA Regional Development Officer, Midlands - increasing your club participation and membership.
  • Tricia Ordsmith, Sailing Development Officer for Birmingham, Black Country and Staffordshire - increasing club participation and membership.
  • Peter Dunn, Sailing Development Officer for East Midlands, excluding Lincs - increasing club participation and membership.

Gareth Brookes, RYA Regional Development Officer for the Midlands, said: “It’s an incredibly busy day with a wealth of knowledge and expertise for clubs to tap into, covering everything from legal issues to increasing participation. The conference provides a fantastic one-stop shop for any club wanting to stay vibrant and build strong foundations for the future.

“Sailing is a dynamic sport and the world it operates in - be it the demands on your club members from work and family life, or the requirements of grant organisations and the law - is changing all the time. For any club wanting to stay at the top of its game the conference is a must-do event.”

The day will conclude with a summary, handouts and a quiz with prizes!

Book your place at the conference here

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