Netball Success – On and Off the Court

The University of Leeds Netball Club are celebrating four awards after one of their most successful years to date.

Firstly, in February 2019, they were crowned winners of the Student Sport, Special Contribution category at the Leeds Sport Awards. They then went on to win ‘Club of the Year’ at this year’s Sports Colours Awards and Netball club captain, Annalisa Townsend was awarded the Gryphon Leadership Award for her outstanding efforts in steering the club.
Not to mention, a Leeds for Life citizenship award for ‘Project of the Year’ for their schools volunteering project alongside the Leeds Rhinos Foundation.

Netball club at the sports colours awards

Social Sport

The netball club have contributed over 500 hours of volunteering this academic year. This makes them one of our best clubs on campus for giving back.
On campus, social sport activators Anna Blake & Rosie Tate also delivered weekly social netball sessions at The Edge. These sessions enable students to play regular netball without the commitment of being on a team.

Being an activator helped me to improve my confidence & creativity. Each week we had to come up with fun, engaging ideas for the group.”

Rosie Tate, Netball Activator.

The University of Leeds also supports a huge social netball league with 36 teams competing each year. In order to run, a team of 20 volunteer umpires officiate 2 hours each per week during term.
Here’s what Elise had to say about her time as a Netball Umpire: 

Netball Umpire Quote - "Volunteering as a netball umpire for the past two years has been a great way to be more involved in a sport I love, and a fun way to improve key employability skills. I have been able to help other players enjoy netball as much as I do, as well as improve my confidence both individually and within a team."

New Opportunities

The netball club have been a driving force behind a new schools volunteering pilot in partnership with the Leeds Rhinos Foundation. Seven members of the club volunteered in local primary schools, delivering netball amongst other sports alongside the Rhinos. Each volunteer also committed to achieving their ‘Level 2 Principles of Coaching Sport & Physical Activity’ award to prepare them for their placement.

“The Gryphons into Schools programme has been a fantastic experience for myself and the other netball girls who volunteered. Participating in the schools programme has given me the confidence to do more coaching and take on any challenge. Whether you have done coaching before or not I would highly recommend it – not only because it’s a great experience, but because of the skill set you develop throughout.”

Annalisa Townsend, Club Captain.

Volunteers with school children

Their volunteering enabled over 3300 participations in netball to take place on campus and across Leeds this year. Furthermore, the clubs voluntary activities carried an economic value of over £3500.

The netball club have demonstrated a genuine passion for netball and created a culture of volunteering in the club in a relatively short space of time. Annalisa was the driving force behind all of this, influencing and supporting others to achieve more. They’ve really shown what can be achieved through hard work and commitment to others.”

Suzzi Garnett, Sports Volunteering Officer

Charity Work

In addition, the club have also dedicated time to charitable activities, such as the Christmas shoebox appeal, rainbow scrunchies during LGBT+ history month, as well as a joint social with Rugby League in aid of the James Burke Foundation and many more.

Finally, congratulations once again to the University of Leeds Netball Club on their achievements this year. As a result, they’ve already got 24 volunteers lined up to support various programmes next academic year.

netball volunteer on the side of the netball court

If your club or society is interested in volunteering you can check out our current programmes here.
Meanwhile, applications for our Gryphons into Schools programme are open – individuals from any sporting background can apply and applications close on Friday 21st June 2019.

For more information about the programmes mentioned or sports volunteering, contact:
Suzzi Garnett, Sports Volunteering Officer
s.garnett@leeds.ac.uk / 0113 343 1544.