This season Chard Cricket Club invested time in making their club more accessible and inclusive to the local community by providing cricket opportunities for young people and adults with a disability.
Let’s see how they achieved this……
Why did you get create an inclusive cricket session?
Traditionally cricket has been a very male dominated club, people with additional needs would not have been considered to play cricket or been offered the opportunity to do so. The club are passionate about cricket and believe that sport should be accessible to all and wanted to offer a safe space to have fun, make friends and play cricket.
How did you find the volunteers?
We discussed accessibility cricket at the committee meeting and two volunteers came forward, both of which had experience in working with people with additional needs. The volunteers wanted to offer the opportunity for this excluded group to be part of the club. The club wanted to ” be the change we wanted to see”
What impact has it had on those who attended?
The feedback was very positive. All participants improved on their cricket skills and had fun. Everyone involved attended each week and enjoyed the end of season BBQ, finishing with a very competitive game of cricket. There is a buzz and in off the season we have been asked when we would be starting again – they loved it!
Beyond the physical aspect of playing, one participant was enabled to support the club in some ground renovation (with carer supervision) by helping to paint our fences. It was great to provide this opportunity and further foster that sense of belonging.
What impact has it had on the club?
For the volunteers we loved leading these sessions, A quote from one volunteer “this has become my favourite part of the week!”. Having accessibility cricket raises your profile in your community. We wanted to lead by example and be a role models for other clubs.
Plans moving forward?
We are hoping we can grow the number of participants next season. We plan and to engage with local providers earlier in the year (before the season starts) to try to increase numbers.
Is your Club interested?
Please contact Emily.Vickery@somersetcricketfoundation.org if you would like to discuss how to start an inclusive cricket session at your club. Full training and mentoring provided.