Over the last year, Edinburgh University Badminton Club has been involved in charity work and volunteering at local events. It has also worked with other badminton clubs, helping with coaching and other related tasks in an attempt to improve lives, whilst also encouraging community participation in the sport.
During the month of November, 17 EUBC members went to the Edinburgh Donation Centre to give blood, with 13 eligible to do so. Only one member was a returning donor, meaning that this initiative helped encourage 12 new people to become more involved in giving back to their community. Although members were nervous at the prospect of what turned out to be a very simple procedure, everyone was keen to give what they could. Support shown by other members of the club allowed fears to be waylaid, helping the blood drive to be an undeniable success. This is the first of multiple donations that the Badminton Club has committed to participating in, with an increased interest from a number of members.
Furthermore, in November, the Great Scottish Spin Off took place. The event consisted of a virtual race around the whole of Scotland, with visits to every Scottish Student Sport office in the country. With a journey of over 800 miles, and just 12 hours to complete the challenge, it required a monumental team effort from a number of the University’s sport clubs. The Badminton Club helped put the Edinburgh team over the line, whilst also helping raise £98.81 for the Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) – Edinburgh University Sports Union’s charity of the year.
The club further contributed to SAMH by raising another £96 thanks to a fiendish pub quiz, whilst also encouraging shopping from local charity shops. This was a way of giving back to local organisations in Edinburgh, and allowed members a greater choice with which charities to donate to. Later in the year, the club sent 10 members, mostly consisting of social badminton players, to volunteer at the Lothian Disability Badminton Club (LDBC), to help at their SDS Disability Badminton Championships.
Throughout the event the volunteers were responsible for score keeping, umpiring, aiding competitors with learning difficulties, and ensuring that the hall was in kept in good condition for the players. The tournament was run in partnership with Scottish Disability Sport and was a sanctioned Special Olympic event, which allowed it to act as a stepping stone for those with aspirations of competing at the Tokyo Paralympics in 2020. The quality on display was very high, and all members agreed that the event had been a great success.
After low level volunteering, the club has managed to cultivate a sustained relationship with LDBC. Club members now attend their sessions every Tuesday to help coach the younger players and provide competition for many of the senior players, many of whom are international para-badminton players.
Image courtesy of Ryan McCuaig