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Information for Parents to Consider

Parents are an essential part in encouraging and supporting a child's participation in their chosen sport

When looking for a golf session or a golf club for your child to join, it is important to know that your child is receiving a quality experience within golf and that their well-being is safeguarded when they are participating.

Wales Golf is continually working to develop junior golf by creating and enhancing schemes and resources which all help to improve the provision for juniors and ensure that their welfare is paramount.

There is also an example Parental Responsibilities document and Wales Golf Code of Conduct which can be downloaded from the link below.

As a parent, you play an essential part in encouraging and supporting your child’s participation in their chosen sport. There are obvious parts to this, such as providing lifts to and from club and competitions, or by buying kit and equipment.

You can provide a positive role model, encouraging fair play and a sporting approach to your child’s involvement.  However, there are times when parental behaviour is much less positive and makes it difficult for children to enjoy or even continue to take part in their sport. Sometimes parents may not recognise or realise that they are behaving in a negative or abusive way.

Positive things you can do

  • Support your child enthusiastically
  • Encourage your child without expecting perfection
  • Be a good role model – to children and other parents
  • Promote fair play
  • Acknowledge the efforts of all the children
  • Encourage your child to play by the rules
  • Support the coaches and officials (particularly young officials)
  • Share challenges or criticisms (of officials, coaches or players) in a constructive way
  • Encourage other spectators to be positive
  • Challenge or report poor behaviour
  • Allow the coaches to coach
  • Support and respect your child’s ambitions in sport
  • Remember that this is your child’s sporting experience – not yours
  • Celebrate and support your child as a whole person who needs a range of experiences, both inside and outside sport

The Child Protection in Sport Unit has released a video titled “It’s our game, not yours” My magic sports kit – in this video, children describe how parents’ and spectators’ behaviour gets worse during competitions- and how this effects the young athletes. To view the video please click here.

These short clips (below) for parents look at how they can help young people play and achieve to the best of their ability. They’re excerpts from a longer interview with Dr Camilla Knight titled ‘Positive sports parents – valuing their contribution’.

Messages for parents of young athletes

Key points

– To best be involved in your child’s sporting life, talk to your child
– Understand why they’re participating
– Let them know why you want them to enjoy sport
– Work out shared goals, which will lead to a shared understanding about what their sport means to them
– Through positive practices, talk to your child about how they feel about your involvement

The role of parents in supporting children and young people in sport

Key points

-.It’s too easy to think of negative media stories about over-involved parents
– ‘Pushy parents’ are only a minority of parents
– Some parents worry about this negative image – so they’re not sure how they should support their children
– It’s important that they fulfil their critical role in a young athlete’s life
– Below are just a few of the ways in which Wales Golf are developing junior golf:

Safeguarding Children

Wales Golf is a member of the Golf Safeguarding Action Group (GSAG), which consists of members from the golfing bodies across Great Britain and has been set up to help golf respond to the issue of child protection in sport.  Its mission is to safeguard the welfare of children and young people, as well as adults at risk, in the sport of golf.  This will be achieved through the unique partnership which has the ability to influence and act as an advocate for safeguarding across the golfing landscape. Members of the GSAG include; Wales Golf, The Professional Golfers’ Association, England Golf, Scottish Golf, Ladies European Tour and The Golf Foundation.

Wales Golf is also a member of GSAG Case Management Group.  The CMG is made up of independent members who are volunteers with relevant safeguarding management experience and expertise, as well as the relevant lead officer from each member organisation.  The primary role of the CMG is to offer advice and guidance in relation to safeguarding concerns and cases and to support the relevant member Golf organisations’ Safeguarding Leads in carrying out their role and responsibilities.  When clubs refer any concerns or cases into Wales Golf a uniformed decision can be made at the CMG and the club will be supported through the process.

If you have any concerns about the welfare of a child in golf, however great or small, or concerns regarding the behaviour or practice of a coach or organiser, please contact Diane Davies, Lead Child Protection Officer on 07923 065317 or Sian Simmons, Safeguarding Co-ordinator on 01633 436040 or via email sian.simmons@walesgolf.org

Safeguarding policies for Wales Golf affiliated clubs

All Golf Clubs affiliated to Wales Golf are required to have a Safeguarding policy in place, contact Sian Simmons, sian.simmons@walesgolf.org for a template policy

Junior Accredited Clubs

The Junior GolfCert Award is a national scheme that identifies and recognises junior and beginner friendly golf facilities – further information can be found on the Junior Accredited clubs section of this website.

Junior Golf Guide Website resource for Junior Organisers

Wales Golf has produced a dedicated website which guides and supports golf clubs in developing junior golf and also assists them in achieving Junior GolfCert. Visit www.juniorgolfguide.org.uk

Schemes & Resources

Initiatives including the Golf Skills Cymru, Club Coaching Grants, HSBC Golf Roots Centres, Junior New2Golf membership, the Junior Golf Passport, plus more have been designed to provide juniors and young people with coaching and playing opportunities within golf clubs. For information on all initiatives visit the various sections of this website.

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