Club Excellence ensuring “long term health and success” of community sport clubs

OTTAWA, Ontario -- January 29, 2015 – Club Excellence “will ensure the long term health and success” of member clubs, according to Boxing Ontario, part of the latest wave of sport governing bodies to sign on as Associate Members of the ground-breaking program.

According to Matthew Kennedy, Boxing Ontario’s Executive Director, “(Club Excellence) has helped us assess and benchmark our capacity and build on those areas where we identified room to grow. As an Associate Member, this program will also help us support and recognize our clubs as they enter a standardisation framework…We now use this program as a mechanism to mark ‘excellence’ in our own club evaluation matrix.”

The addition of Boxing Ontario, the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association, Rugby Canada, and the Saskatchewan Soccer Association brings to 11 the total number of sport governing bodies whose member clubs now enjoy access to a range of customized tools and resources to improve their programs. Since 2012, Associate Membership has skyrocketed by 240 per cent, with 80 different clubs at the entry or “Affiliate” level and five others having achieved Level 1 Certified status. A more detailed description of program components can be found at www.clubexcellence.com.

Beyond the nation-wide benchmark, sport governing bodies are recognizing the close alignment between Club Excellence and long-term athlete development (LTAD). "Club Excellence will tool up our clubs to consistently deliver vibrant and well organized 'Can Freestyle' Long Term Athlete Development Programs, according to Meredith Gardner, Sport Development Director for the Canadian Freestyle Ski Association. “This is a much-needed GPS to navigate the complex pathway of the Canadian Sport system, and ultimately Club Excellence will help secure Canadian Freestyle Skiing’s future as a world leader in winter sport."

For Rugby Canada, Club Excellence will help boost club and PTSO development of the sport across the country. “Ultimately, Club Excellence will affect long term athletic development by enhancing a club's ability to deliver a sound and safe rugby program,” said Myles Spencer, Chief Operating Officer for Rugby Canada. “Established clubs will now have a measuring stick for a standard of excellence, while new clubs will immediately be given a benchmark to aspire to. This program has the ability to raise the profile of our sport in Canada."

By implementing the Club Excellence framework, these leading sport organizations are building club capacity in a number of critical areas including coaching, people management, governance, recruitment, financial accountability, marketing, and revenue generation.

Clubs from all Associate Member sports benefit from an integrated approach to club development, learning to operate differently, plan ahead for challenges, and serve their members more effectively using the Club Excellence framework as a guide.

For the Saskatchewan Soccer Association’s Doug Pederson, “The program aligns well with our Member and Organizational Development Plan. And by working together, we will utilize the Club Excellence standards to strengthen both our organization and our member organizations to offer an even better soccer experience to Saskatchewan’s 43,100 soccer registered participants.

The SSA has also provided their entire membership with the opportunity to join as an Affiliate at no cost. This will allow the SSA to assess what support Affiliated clubs need in order to attain Level 1 Certification. By paying the annual fee for their 60 member clubs, the SSA has effectively introduced another potential model for sport governing bodies to follow.

Staff from all Associate Members will participate in Club Excellence training, building their internal capacity to support member clubs in achieving Affiliate and Certified status over the next three years. A 12-step process for implementation, as well as many tools and resources, will be customized to guide clubs through this innovative quality assurance program.

About Club Excellence

Club Excellence is the only national, multi-sport certification program for club-level sport. It is building a network of healthy, strong and sustainable sport clubs and organizations across Canada. The Club Excellence Cooperative (CEC) was created in 2007 with common goals to identify a stable and supportive environment for coaches, improve implementation of Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) at the community level, and ensure quality club programming built on the True Sport values of fairness, excellence, inclusion and fun.

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Media Contact : Amanda Burford

Program Coordinator,
Club Excellence (613) 521-3340 x3205