Your School, Your Club

The ability to access good sports facilities within the local communities is vital to any sporting organisation, yet many clubs in Northern Ireland struggle to find suitable places to train and compete. A large number of sports facilities are located on school premises and by making these available to sports clubs can bring significant benefits to both the school and the local clubs.

Sport Northern Ireland has produced guidance material to help schools open their doors for community use. The ‘Your School, Your Club’ publication offers guidance to organisations that can either influence or facilitate community use of school sports facilities. It highlights the benefits of community use, various approaches to community use of sports facilities, the core principals of community use, and outlines a number of examples of best practice from across Northern Ireland.

In addition, the Department of Education has also developed a guidance toolkit that seeks to enhance current levels of community provision by providing the necessary encouragement, advice and support that will assist school leaders in dealing with the practical issues involved when making school premises available for wider community use. The document includes advice on the following key areas: Ownership and Control of School Premises; Operational Management; Health and Safety; Child Protection; Human Resources; and Finance.