Update from BNS President
Dear Badminton Nova Scotia Members,
Greetings to you all. I am sending this email to you all as my last communication as President of Badminton Nova Scotia. In case some of you are not aware, I will be stepping down from the role of president at the AGM that is being held this coming Saturday at the Provincials being held in Truro. This is again a long email, but please read until the end as there is some important information and requests!
The past 2 years of being president and the previous 5 before that when I was Director of Coaches and Officials have been a great experience, and I have enjoyed every minute of trying to help develop the sport of badminton in Nova Scotia and get us more recognized on the national scene.
I hope that I am leaving the board and Badminton in the province in a better place and I look forward to watching the sport grow even further in the future under the leadership and guidance of the new board and president. Obviously, I did not accomplish this all on my own, there has been lots of hard work by the previous presidents Leigh and Kerry and the board members that worked with them to help bring badminton to where we are now. Looking back we have had some major accomplishments over the past 7 years that I have been involved with the board:
- We now have an excellent Atlantic series that is being run between New Brunswick and ourselves. The quality of the tournaments has increased exponentially with the assistance of Daryl in Moncton and our tournament directors here, both past and present (Mark Barry, Steve Pothier, Drew Hubley, Robert Proctor). It is fantastic now to walk into these tournaments and see a/ the number of athletes we now have competing, and b/ the improved quality of the play as well as the venues we are playing in. We have also introduced a Provincial Club Series of tournaments to try and help grow the sport across the province. Please continue to come and support these events and help grow the sport, and attend tournaments outside of your home area to help support badminton in other areas of the province as well. This is essential to help grow the sport and to show case that badminton is not a backyard game.
- We have been working hard over the last 7 years to increase the number and quality of the coaches we have in the province. We have worked hard with Badminton Canada to get the new coaching levels approved by the NCCP and to also get people trained in the province to be able to deliver quality coaching courses. For the first time, we now have trainers in the province that can run courses from beginner to national level coaching certifications. This is fantastic as it vastly reduces the costs that are associated with running a course and makes it more feasible to run. There will be some coaching courses coming up soon, so please keep an eye on the badminton NS website for these when they get announced.
- The reason I first joined the board was that I was the only official turning up to tournaments around the province. In the first few tournaments I got a few strange looks from people a/ because there was an official … what’s that?! And b/ what language is he speaking?. Luckily you all assimilated to my accent quickly and very quickly accepted me and welcomed me into badminton community. Since then I have run numerous training courses to train new officials, and we now have a core of 4 – 6 officials in NS, and 2 in NB who are regular attendees at tournaments. It is also fantastic that a number of these officials have gone onto get their National Certification (Aine Humble, Sheri Parks), and shout out to Kim Beals who is going to get assessed at this years Junior Nationals in Burlington. Good luck, and I know you will do great! The amount of national officials has a few effects, firstly, it improves the quality of the tournaments, then it also increases the visibility of Nova Scotia at a national level, to the point now, where badminton Canada are asking for our opinions.
- National Recognition. Leading on from the last point, over the last 4 years Badminton Nova Scotia has been becoming more involved with decision making at a national level. We have had board members involved with development of LTAD 2.0, working groups on memberships, National Officials Committees and most recently in some of their strategic planning. This is essential to making our voice heard at a national level so that programs and decisions are made that will benefit us as a smaller province and not just the large badminton provinces. Also Chris White is a board member with Badminton Canada, and even though he is now living in Manitoba, he always makes sure that the eastern provinces voices and thoughts are voiced.
- High Performance. With the changing in funding model from Sport Nova Scotia, we had to develop a more structured High Performance program. With the immense amount of work and dedication from Robert Proctor, the Provincial Team was formed. This has now led to a sustained approach to High Performance and alongside
- The high performance plan is working to grow the sport and increase the quality and level of badminton within the province.
- I will save what I think is the best thing to last. The badminton community has always been strong in Nova Scotia. Over the last 5-6 years, BNS has been working hard to build a regional community as well, so including our friends in NL, NB and PEI. We have been offered coaching programs / officials programs and cross provincial training sessions (HPI Atlantic) that have helped work towards developing an increased sense of community. This sense of community to me anyway was what kept me involved with badminton within the province and what drove me to try and increase the sport. I hope that this continues to grow further in the future and attracts even more players to this wonderful sport.
- There have been many more achievements over the last 7 years that I have seen, but to save you reading I have just highlighted some of them.
So this is where we are now …. What does the future hold? Well this is where YOU come in. Recently I have been involved with the strategic planning sessions at Badminton Canada (along with representatives of all the other provinces), and they have been focusing on a number of key areas:
- Membership numbers
- Value proposition for members
- High performance
The issues that Badminton Canada are facing are very similar to the ones that we are also facing in the province. So I have tasked the board to start to look at each of these areas too. The idea being that anything that comes out from Badminton Canada can then be looked at and used at a provincial level too.
The board has been allocated leads in each of these areas, but now this is where we need YOUR help. The board is a volunteer group, and we need to have member involvement onto these committees to a/ help spread the workload and b/ to try and get a more balanced voice from the membership to try and help improve each of these areas in the province. The Board Chairs of each of these sub committees will be:
- Revenue – Bev White / Jennifer Petrie
- Member Numbers – Pat Thompson / Adele Pellerin
- Value Proposition – Nick Driscoll / Jordan Goodine
- Competition – Drew Hubley
- High Performance – Robert Proctor
If you feel that you have some thoughts or opinions on how any of these areas could be improved, then I urge you to get in touch with Badminton Nova Scotia through Jennifer Petrie (firstname.lastname@example.org) detailing which committee you would like to be involved with. We can only make things better by working together and these sub committees will be essential in helping the sport grow in the province and nationally as well.
So that is all I have to say about that … for me a relatively short email, but I hope that you have seen the changes in badminton within the province and that you will also be an integral part of helping it grow in the future too.
I just want to end with a personal thank you to every one of you for welcoming a “come from away” into your community and making him feel very welcome. I have enjoyed every minute of working with the board, but it’s time I focused on family and allow younger and people with more energy to take over and help drive the sport forwards. I will still be involved with badminton, coaching, officiating and playing so you can’t get rid of me that easily 😊
President – Badminton Nova Scotia