Beginner Session – 10th August

Edinburgh City Korfball are hosting a FREE Beginner Session to introduce new players to korfball.

Korfball is similar to netball and basketball in style, but it is unique as it is a mixed-sex sport where teams have to be made up of equal numbers of male and female players.

The session will be held at Wester Hailes Education Centre on Saturday 10th August 2019 from 14.00 to 16.00 and if you need any assistance finding the venue you can contact Daniel Pratt at eckc.development@gmail.com

You can sign up to our Facebook event here for all the up to date details: https://bit.ly/2JEKtoG

 

You can view a great breakdown of the rules here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GUtJB5jBOis

There will also be a prize draw for beginners attending the event and the winner will receive a season’s free membership to the club!

#VolunteersWeek

As Volunteers Week 2019 draws to a close, Head Coach and Development Coordinator Daniel Pratt has written about his experiences as a volunteer and explains just what keeps him going:

 

For #VolunteersWeek I thought I’d write about my experience with volunteering over the last couple of decades to give a view of what life can be like as a volunteer, and also in the hope that it will inspire more people to get involved with projects close to them.

My journey as a volunteer started, as many others do, with being asked to help out by one of those smiley, friendly faces that are just impossible to say no to.

 

Only 15 at the time, I had been playing for Croydon Korfball’s senior teams for a couple of years and it was Anna Jeanes who approached me to ask if I could help coach the junior players at the club. I think we both knew that there was no way I could turn down the request for help and so my lifetime of volunteering began.

Anna was the perfect role-model as a volunteer; she played at the top level of the sport, was helping run the club committee and was overseeing a thriving junior programme which was seeing so many kids getting involved in sport. Visiting schools on a weekly basis, Anna was always doing as much as she could to encourage the next generation to give korfball a go.

 

I started helping out at junior sessions, following the lead of a head-coach and encouraging the younger players to enjoy the various drills and matches.

Although some people now may struggle to believe it, I was very shy at that age and it was volunteering and the responsibility that came with it that brought out my character. I was in a situation where I needed to be supportive and encouraging for the younger players and I couldn’t do that by sitting quietly in a corner.

It didn’t take long before I was confident enough to be able to coach the players and lead drills myself. The enjoyment you get from seeing others enjoying themselves as a result really can give you such a drive to do more and that was exactly what happened, beginning with helping out on school visits before coaching every week at after school clubs.

Coaching juniors really is rewarding, the fun and enjoyment that children have is infectious and you just can’t help smiling when the noise of clapping and shouting and cheering carries across the school playground.

 

After a few more years of coaching and helping out with organising the club’s annual tournament, I also joined the club committee. Being able to help influence the decisions the club was making made me feel like a valuable part of something. It was at a time where there were big changes on the horizon, with the clubhouse being purchased to make way for the new tram coming to Croydon, there were decisions to be made as to where the money would be invested in to.

There were meetings with the council, local sports groups, as well as committee meetings to attend and it was the first time I found that being a volunteer might mean giving up a little more of my time than I first expected!

 

After many years of coaching, I was presented with another opportunity for volunteering and like before, it was pretty difficult to say no. This time it was down at a Scout camp in Chalfont Heights. It wasn’t exactly stressful work, on the odd weekend I would head to the campsite and over the next couple of days I would help kids take part in archery, rock climbing, abseiling, swimming and plenty of other activities. The evenings were easy going, with a few drinks around a campfire and a lodge to catch some rest in. It was here that I found out that volunteering wasn’t just free labour, it could be enjoyable and become a hobby too!

 

At 24 I moved to The Netherlands and with that, I got the chance to learn another lesson in volunteering. I was asked to help coach my new team’s B1 team (under 16s) but being the typical Brit abroad, my language skills were very limited. I found out pretty quickly that coaching doesn’t always require people to speak the same language and like a younger, better looking Schteve McLaren I was able to take the training sessions and coach on match-days using the very little Dutch I knew (minus the swearing).

It taught me very quickly, that as long as you are passionate about what you do, volunteering can be incredibly rewarding, regardless of the various situations you might find yourself in. I found that success for a volunteer wasn’t just about the end result, but about the small moments on the journey where a player might suddenly start to pick up that technique you’d patiently taught them or bringing together a group of players who stick together as friends long after the season finishes. There are many rewards there for volunteers who can offer some time and it can feel great when that gets repaid with moments like that.

 

After The Netherlands, I found myself up in Scotland playing korfball in a much smaller pool than I had been used to in England or especially The Netherlands. For context, the club I played for in NL was from a very small village called Leiderdorp and there were three times as many korfballers at the club, than there were in the whole of Scotland. It was clear that I could offer something to Scottish korfball and when the time came, I found myself volunteering again, having put myself forward for the national committee I was quickly in a position where I was in charge of something with a huge potential that wasn’t being realised. Thankfully, with a wealth of volunteering experience and more years in korfball than I cared to mention, I was able to see where the easy fixes were and the longer term battles that would need to be fought.

I was very lucky in my first year as chairperson of Scotland Korfball to have a core of other like-minded volunteers who were happy to give up a considerable amount of time to help change the direction of Scottish korfball. Unfortunately, the big changes that have been put in place will not begin to bear fruit for another few years yet, but I hope that the group will feel the same sense of accomplishment that I feel, knowing that we have helped set the course for korfball to flourish in Scotland.

 

With volunteering, there can be some very quick rewards, but also some hard work which goes unseen and unpraised. I think this is why it’s so important, when you are volunteering, to pick something you are passionate about and invested in.

When the tough moments come along, you want to have that light to guide you through the darkness because it isn’t always the big smiles and fun you see in the public events. Having come this far, I now look back at the big beaming smile I used to get from Anna as a young adult and I know that there must have been countless evenings where, in private, that smile was gone and a feeling of exhaustion replaced it.

I have had many moments over the last few years where it all felt like it could be too much, but the passion and drive have kept me going. I’m very grateful to be in a position at the moment at my current club, Edinburgh City, where I am surrounded with other volunteers full of passion and energy. It is also a moment in the club’s history where we are breaking records almost weekly, with membership up to its highest number we have entered a third team into the league for the very first time and have had so many new players trying out the sport.

It’s these moments, as a volunteer, that I would recommend to cherish the most. Whilst they are happening, don’t overlook them and enjoy them as much as possible. When the dark times come and it all feels like an uphill struggle, remember these moments and recognise that they will come back!

Volunteering isn’t always easy, but it can be the most rewarding thing you can do in life. I really hope that from those who read this, there is one who might decide today is the day they get out and volunteer. Whether it’s for a hobby they already enjoy, or for a local community group or whether it’s as simple as picking up litter once a week. There are so many great ways you can help the world be a better place and if you’re stuck for inspiration, I’d recommend heading to https://volunteeringmatters.org.uk/ for some great ideas of opportunities near you!

All 3 teams in action! Match reports: 24-03-19

We’re bringing you a roundup of the weekend’s games with all 3 teams in action on Sunday it was a busy day for the club.

 

The 1s had a short trip to QMU in an all-Edinburgh clash, with league leaders Mavericks and Edinburgh University being the opposition.

 

Edinburgh City 1 (36) v (3) Edinburgh University 1

The first match of the day was against the University team and after a bit of a slow scoring start, City really put on a show. Ella Paul and Laura de Nooij really clicked, scoring 7 goals each and were always dangerous. Down the other end, Dave Ewing was breaking records again, scoring a massive 12 goals! The fine shooting display marks a new high in SKA history and he’s certainly living up to the “Shooter Dave” moniker he earned in his Saints days.

The 36-3 result also broke a couple of records for City, being the highest ever margin of victory (33) and the highest ever goal tally (36), so it really was a complete team performance. Clive Minshull also put in a real shift, playing just the second half he managed a huge 27 rebounds and a City record 10 assists!

Scorers: Laura de Nooij (7), Ella Paul (7), David Ewing (12), Daniel Pratt (4), Heather Mackintosh (3), Jacky Mo (2), Emma Cottell (1)

MVP: David Ewing

 

Edinburgh City 1 (12) v (24) Edinburgh Mavericks 1

Taking on the defending champions and current league-leaders was not going to be an easy task but the City 1s were hoping to put on a better showing than the last time the teams met (a 21-9 loss).

Mavericks started out well, creating chances with their rapid ball movement but City were able to stay with them after earning and scoring penalties in both sections to leave the scores at 3-5 after the opening 10 minutes. However, Mavs showed just why they are running away with the league again this season with some slick passing and precise shooting and pulled away to a 5-12 lead at half time.

The second half was a similar affair to the first, with City showing good signs in attack but Mavericks being far more consistent. The game was slightly marred towards the end, with both Angus Davidson and Daniel Pratt going off injured and we hope that they both recover well.

The Citizens were really paced by another incredible shooting display from Laura de Nooij in this one, scoring 8 goals and finishing the day with 15 in total. Thanks must go to Calum Lindsay too, after he stepped in to referee the match at short notice.

The win for Mavericks confirms them as champions of SKL1 for another season with 2 games left to play and it’s been deserved after another dominant campaign. City will get another chance to test themselves against Mavs on the league final day on April 13th.

Scorers: Laura de Nooij (8), Michael Garbutt (1), David Ewing (3)

MVP: Laura de Nooij

 

Our 2s and 3s were in action too, with both teams travelling to Dundee to take on their 2s.

 

Edinburgh City 3 (6) v (6) Dundee 2

The first matchup was City 3 taking on the hosts and it saw old favourite Graham Robertson pulling on a City top again after his recent transfer and a debut for John McDowell as well.

The 3s got off to a strong start, getting out to a 4-1 lead at half time, with Lauren Kelly looking dangerous in attack and bagging a couple of goals, but unfortunately they couldn’t hold Dundee out for long, conceding in the dying moments of the game to come away with a point each.

Scorers: Jess Nelmes (1), Lauren Kelly (2), Ailith Ewing (1), Lee Goossens (1), Graham Robertson (1)

MVP: Lauren Kelly

 

Edinburgh City 2 (19) v (4) City 3

The final grudge (in the friendliest way) match of the season saw the 2s come out on top against the 3s again but there was some great korfball on display. John McDowell and Jeremy Lau scored their first goals for the club, whilst Graham Robertson and Bob Mather provided the structure for the 3s.

The 2s were just too strong though and all of the team managed to score at least a couple of goals, showing the real all-round strength that they’ve developed recently. Andrew Goode and Graham Robertson picked up the MVP awards in this match, showing that a good old-fashioned rebounding performance is still appreciated in the league!

Scorers: Rob Stone (2), Jess Nelmes (2), Andrew Goode (4), Andrea Kinver (4), Chris Horsley (3), Laura Powell (2), Ailith Ewing (2)

Lee Goossens (1), Graham Robertson (1), Jeremy Lau (1), John McDowell (1)

MVPs: Graham Robertson, Andrew Goode

 

Edinburgh City 2 (14) v (10) Dundee 2

The final match of the day saw the 2s put in a more comfortable performance than the scoreline might suggest. Another great team effort saw the goals spread around the team with Jess Nelmes grabbing another couple of goals for her season tally and showing she’s turning in to a real threat on both ends of the court.

Andrea Kinver picked up the MVP award in the match and along with Ailith Ewing and Rob Stone the scoreboard was steadily ticking along with hat-tricks for all three players.

The results mean that Edinburgh City 2 have pulled ahead of Edinburgh University 2 and will take 2nd place in SKL2 on finals day Saturday 13th April! Only finishing behind an impressive Strathclyde 1 team is a great result for the 2s as they’ve been building steadily throughout the season.

Scorers: Rob Stone (3), Jess Nelmes (2), Andrea Kinver (3), Chris Horsley (1), Laura Powell (2), Ailith Ewing (3)

MVP: Andrea Kinver

International Women’s Day – Christie Smillie

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women – while also marking a call to action for accelerating gender-balance.

To celebrate the day, as well as raise awareness of the importance of gender-balance and the #BetterforBalance campaign, we will be talking to a number of women from the club and finding out what the day means for them, how korfball can help gender-balance, hearing their experiences and seeing if there are any lessons we can take forward.

 

ChristieChristie is pictured here at the Processions Walk in June 2018, which celebrated 100 years of women being able to vote where hundreds of women and girls walked around Edinburgh in suffragette colours as a ‘mass participation artwork’.

Christie is studying geology at Edinburgh University, where she is also playing korfball and coaching the beginner teams. Alongside this, Christie is also the assistant coach at Edinburgh City Korfball Club where she has made a drastic impact on the club, with members being incredibly grateful for her help and guidance.

 

What does International Women’s Day and the #BalanceforBetter campaign mean to you?

International Women’s Day highlights achievements of women around the world and promotes equality.

Everyone receives the same treatment, chances and respect as their peers. It means that we’re actively campaigning and developing as a society into a world where people can expect fair and equal treatment irrespective of their sex or gender.

Just because we are women should not mean that we experience discrimination.

 

What are your experiences of gender-balance in your everyday life?

Gender balance is how we find a way to have equal representation as a man or a woman across every aspect of society.

I’ve experienced a range of negative balances where I have felt a lack of respect, intimidated, inferior and unimportant by a masculinity fuelled situation.

From being told I’m bossy for having an opinion; being told that I run like a girl; that I’m wearing too much make-up. I’ve heard men in cars shout and whistle at women in the street. It is not safe to walk around at night because I am female.

Women often do not receive the same opportunities as men in male-dominated work places. I’m likely to get paid less than my male counterpart when I graduate because I am a woman.

There’s a long history of toxic forced gender roles that are outdated, damaging and not representative of modern society. This is gender imbalance.

We have a lack of recognition for female scientists, artists, athletes (past and present) because we’ve been conditioned to think that men are superior. This then controls the negative gender balance of female role models for young girls to inspire the next generation of “This Girl Can”.

However, my experience of positive gender-balance has shown me that change can happen and have an incredible impact. I’ve experienced fair and equal treatment as a woman at university, work and in sport. In class discussions, I feel that my opinions are valued because what we are given equal opportunities to contribute to discussion.

I have male and female lecturers. I am encouraged to be myself and share my ideas, as is everyone else.

I’ve been challenged, accepted and encouraged by my peers, supervisors and colleagues to achieve my goals- because I am an equal.

 

Does korfball help to promote a gender-balance, and do you think there are lessons that can be learnt for the wider community from our sport?

Each division requires an equal split of men and women. For me, this highlights the importance of being able to work together towards a common goal (or goals!). Also, unlike other sports with fixed positions, korfball allows a more dynamic approach to problem solving strategies, where each player is presented with the same opportunity to contribute to the team.

Both of these aspects are important to the work-place, home environments and wider community.

 

Do you think the club is a positive influence on gender-balance and are there any areas that the club excels in or could do better?

As a fairly new addition to the coaching team I’ve found that the warm welcome encourages all players to come along and try korfball.

I’ve been supported by the head coach and have been part of discussions that influence the team. I feel that my feedback and ideas are respected and valued. Edinburgh City has created an excellent environment to help develop my own coaching skills, ask questions and be able to be a contributor to each training session.

Female coaches are much less common across all sports but we’re out there!  I think it’s also important to know that there is equal representation across the team and committee.  I think Edinburgh City is very successful at achieving a fair gender balance.

I think we need to keep pushing for equality and celebrating the diversity within mixed gender sports.

I’d be very interested in looking towards supporting a women’s charity in Edinburgh.

International Women’s Day – Emma Cottell

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women – while also marking a call to action for accelerating gender-balance.

To celebrate the day, as well as raise awareness of the importance of gender-balance and the #BetterforBalance campaign, we will be talking to a number of women from the club and finding out what the day means for them, how korfball can help gender-balance, hearing their experiences and seeing if there are any lessons we can take forward.

Emma

Emma (pictured right) has been playing korfball on and off since 2010 and has been with Edinburgh City Korfball Club for 3 years. Emma is currently the captain for the 1st team which competes in the Scottish League. Outside of korfball she is training to be a nurse. Emma says “I have made some great friendships in the club with both men and women and it’s an ideal way to unwind.”

 

What does International Women’s Day and the #BalanceforBetter campaign mean to you?

For me, it means equal opportunities for both women and men and making the stereotypical gender roles a thing of the past. No-one should fall short of their ambitions because of their gender.

 

What are your experiences of gender-balance in your everyday life?

As a student nurse, I generally see more female nurses than male nurses. I am glad the long standing gender stereotyping of the nursing role is being challenged today and hope to see a more balanced workforce in future. Having a mixed nursing team changes the dynamic and increases options for dealing with sensitive situations.

 

Does korfball help to promote a gender-balance, and do you think there are lessons that can be learnt for the wider community from our sport?

A korfball team is comprised of 4 male and 4 female players split into two divisions: attack and defence each with 2 males and 2 females. The attacking division’s aim is to shoot into a basket to score goals. The attacker has to get away from their defender to score. Defenders have to be the same gender as the attacker. Korfball was developed in 1901 in Holland with equality in mind.

The best thing about korfball is that you don’t have to be confined to fixed roles or positions. Men and women can switch roles and tailor strategies to the competition. Anyone can score goals, assist a team-mate or rebound the ball after a shot. It doesn’t matter if you’re male or female, you make an equal contribution to the team. I think this model fits well within society, encouraging gender balance. Many popular sports like football have a conflict between the male and female teams effecting media coverage, sponsorship and spectator numbers. This isn’t a problem with korfball. There is no female korfball or male korfball. Korfball is just korfball.

 

Do you think the club is a positive influence on gender-balance and are there any areas that the club excels in or could do better?

The club has a good balance of female and male members now. When I first joined the club we sometimes struggled to get female players. The club has done really well to get great numbers now – we now have three teams competing in the Scottish League. An observation I’ve made watching other players is how female players are sometimes less confident to shoot than male players, particularly if they are quite new to the sport. I think the club has got better at encouraging players to be more confident in their shot and I now see women trying to shoot sooner.

International Women’s Day – Lauren Kelly

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women – while also marking a call to action for accelerating gender-balance.

To celebrate the day, as well as raise awareness of the importance of gender-balance and the #BetterforBalance campaign, we will be talking to a number of women from the club and finding out what the day means for them, how korfball can help gender-balance, hearing their experiences and seeing if there are any lessons we can take forward.

Lauren

Lauren joined Edinburgh City last year following a Beginner Session and has become a really valuable member to the club. As well as playing, Lauren stepped on to the committee after only a few months and has helped shaped the future of the club since.

 

What does International Women’s Day and the #BalanceforBetter campaign mean to you?

International Women’s Day provides a focal point each year in the fight for gender equality. It’s also an opportunity to highlight the achievements of women in the past and present who might otherwise be overlooked. Striving for greater gender balance is vital to correct the systematic injustices women continue to experience the world over and to make all societies happier, healthier, and safer – for men and women.

 

What are your experiences of gender-balance in your everyday life?

As a white Westerner born into an affluent and peaceful society, I live a privileged life. However, even with all that privilege behind me, I’ve still experienced gender-based violence. On a day-to-day basis, I sometimes find people’s assumptions about how I should behave or the role I should perform frustrating. For example, every time there’s a reason to buy someone a card and organise a gift collection in work, people ask me if I’m going to do it. They don’t ask my younger and more junior male colleague!

Does korfball help to promote a gender-balance, and do you think there are lessons that can be learnt for the wider community from our sport?

I think korfball definitely promotes gender balance because a team can only win if its male and female players are communicating well and making full use of each other’s talents regardless of gender. I think the wider community can learn lots from korfball’s cooperative ethos. When I first started playing, I was amazed by how polite and civilised it is compared to other sports – I think this is at least in part because having men and women playing together on equal terms breaks us out of the arbitrary and destructive hierarchies that we usually operate within.

Do you think the club is a positive influence on gender-balance and are there any areas that the club excels in or could do better?

I think the club is great at promoting gender balance. We’ve got male and female committee members and coaches. Expectations are just the same for male and female players. The club does have more male members than female members at the moment so I think we should continue to work on attracting women to join through events such as the joint korfball/netball training session held last month.

International Women’s Day – Katrina Caldwell

International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women – while also marking a call to action for accelerating gender-balance.

To celebrate the day, as well as raise awareness of the importance of gender-balance and the #BetterforBalance campaign, we will be talking to a number of women from the club and finding out what the day means for them, how korfball can help gender-balance, hearing their experiences and seeing if there are any lessons we can take forward.

PHOTO-2019-03-08-08-17-44

Katrina is currently President of Edinburgh City Korfball Club having played korfball for about 4 years, originally at Edinburgh University before graduating and moving to Edinburgh City 2 years ago.

 

What does International Women’s Day and the #BalanceforBetter campaign mean to you?

Gender-balance, to me, means not having your gender effect the opportunities available to you. No-one should tell you you should, or shouldn’t, do something because of your gender.

 

What are your experiences of gender-balance in your everyday life?

I’ve been privileged to work in areas with some great female role-models. As a statistician people often ask me if it’s male dominated – which it sometimes is – but it’s great to see so much effort being put in to encourage more women and girls to study STEM subjects.

 

Does korfball help to promote a gender-balance, and do you think there are lessons that can be learnt for the wider community from our sport?

Korfball is a mixed-gender sport that relies on both males and females playing well together to make the team work.

I think other sports could learn from the equality in Korfball. The sport is designed to need both genders, and to not discriminate on height or specific skills. It’s a very inclusive sport!

 

Do you think the club is a positive influence on gender-balance and are there any areas that the club excels in or could do better?

I think the club is a good example of gender-balance and is progressing too. We’ve got a roughly 50/50 split of male and female members and this is represented at all levels of the club, from the committee to the coaching team and beyond.