Local MSP Rona Mackay visited Bishopbriggs-based Springburn Harriers who are celebrating a new funding award from the Scottish Government after receiving part of a £20 million fund to get children active during the summer. The fund, which was distributed by local authorities and SportScotland, was targeted to ensure children and young people, who otherwise may not be able to afford it, could experience activities after the lifting of COVID-19 protections.
Springburn Harriers, who train from Huntershill Sports Hub in Auchinairn, are the only athletics club in the UK to hold an official Duke Of Edinburgh Licence, allowing young people to work through their Duke of Edinburgh Award as part of the club. They are further embedded within the Scottish Government’s Developing the Young Workforce workplan, allowing their young coaches to gain their qualification through work at the club. With a waiting list at the club of young people looking to get into athletics after the pandemic, Rona praised the “outstanding” work of the Harriers. She said: “The ongoing work of the Harriers is nothing short of outstanding. To have emerged from the pandemic stronger, fitter and seeking to further expand, to the benefit of my constituents throughout the community, is a real credit to the volunteers who commit wholeheartedly to the club. “It was a delight to stop by and see the work of the Harriers and hear their amazing plans for expansion. It was also great to hear that 60 per cent of their current membership are girls. “I’m standing squarely behind them as they’re looking to upgrade their facilities, fundraise and seek further funding opportunities to ensure their participants – who range from 8 years old to 80 years old – can take part in sport safely and securely as we further emerge from the COVID pandemic.
Juniors' Convenor of Springburn Harriers Running and Athletics Club Barbara Knox said: “We were delighted to welcome Rona to Huntershill and show the work of the Harriers, updating her on our plans for the future following COVID.” “As we emerge from the protection levels, we have a waiting list of young people looking to join in our work. We’ve had a great track record in empowering our young coaches to gain qualifications, confidence and knowledge through our work but central to this is funding. “We were pleased to secure some of the Scottish Government’s £20 million fund for summer activities for children and look forward to working with Rona further to secure further investment in the Harriers.”
Notes to Editors:
Picture: Rona and Members of Springburn Harriers (R-L)
Barbara Knox, Erin Gillen, Rona Mackay, Marianne Emordy
Picture two: Harriers in action