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Case Studies Leadership Programme

Young Hockey Leaders Award by Hockey Ireland

By 18 December 2020December 21st, 2020No Comments

The Young Hockey Leaders Award by Hockey Ireland targets emerging leaders from 14-18 year olds

It is delivered by a trained tutor in schools and clubs around Ireland.

Brief outline of the initiative

As part of the programme, schools / clubs can choose to run the course, or participants can sign up to centralised courses that are run throughout the season.

The 5-hour course introduces young people, aged between 14 and 18, to volunteering. To complete the course, partipants must also complete 5 hours of training time.

The aim of the programme is to encourage young people to enjoy all aspects of the sport of hockey rather than concentrating on playing only.

It runs from a centralized national funding from Sport Ireland through their Dormant Accounts Funding and previously was also funded by the Women in Sport initiative. Hockey Ireland charges 20 euro per participant.

The course initially consists of workshops covering umpiring, coaching and some aspects of team management. Once this is complete, leaders must undertake 5 hours of logged contact time (coaching and/or umpiring/team management), giving them an opportunity to develop their newly acquired skills.

The Young Hockey Leaders Award by Hockey Ireland aims to develop confidence in young people by giving them the initial skills and practical experience to enable them to work with younger players.

In 2018, Hockey Ireland ran 38 courses with 508 participants.

The programme comprises of 2 modules:

  • Umpiring (2.5 hours)
  • Coaching and Team Management (2.5 hours)

The Young Hockey Leaders Award helps to pass on skills, top tips and most importantly confidence so that Young Leaders can get back out to their clubs in order to put their new found knowledge to use! In order to complete the award, each leader must attend the 2 modules and then go back to their club to complete 5 hours of contact time.

However, in 2020, as a result of the current Covid-19 restrictions, Hockey Ireland has decided to divide the delivery of YHLA into 2 parts:

  1. Online regional workshop – 1 hour
  2. Practical regional pitch session – 4 hours

10 hours (5 hours course + 5 hours training)




Centralized national funding from Sport Ireland.


Expenditure around 8000 euros for a year

Key elements


Women and men

Country of origin


Country/Region of implementation


Number of participants

Average of 14 participants per course

Core objective of the Programme

☒ Women empowerment (identifying barriers and working on strengths, creating a community)
☒ Supporting organizational change (strategy for developing diversity, implementation of specific policies, support to change makers)
☐ Allies buy-in and support (mentors, men championing)
☐ External Scrutiny (Pledge board, Indicators, celebration of success…)
☐ Other => Please specify:

Actions implemented

☐ Internal Diversity & Inclusion Strategy for a safe workplace with equal rights (please specify)
☐ Commitment of men - please specify:
☒ Personal development training
☐ Role model highlighted
☐ Networking (women network, men network or mixed) - please specify:
☐ Mentoring (unique or mixed gender, please specify) (experienced & wise guide )
☒ Coaching (ability to inspire and grow people/Foster emulation/ Being influential)
☐ Events (sharing with other companies) - please specify:
☐ Other - please specify:


☐ Online e-learning Module
☐ Online seminar
☒ Workshops
☐ Conference
☒ Self-Assessment tool
☐ Consolidated educational/training programme
☐ Other - Please specify

Identified Key Success Factors

- Partnership with schools and clubs
- Number of participants engaging in the coaching and umpiring pathways

Transferable bites/elements


Our clubs and schools love the fact the programme created helpers for youth sessions. From the programme, we are also seeing these young people engaging with our pathways to become leaders in hockey.

By organisers

Organisation’s strategy to adress Women Empowerment

  • Hockey Ireland is due to launch a new large scale programme in 2019 focusing on developing female leaders within our organisation in all leadership roles (funding dependant).

Source of information: Interview + Online documentation

Check Out More

An initiative selected as a case study of the SWinG library of leadership development initiatives.  

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