Yesterday and today Sport Ireland has been hosting a Sport Development Conference at the Sport Ireland Campus.

Over 200 sports development staff working with National Governing Bodies and Local Sports Partnerships have gathered for two days of learning in areas of collaboration, community engagement and the power and impact of sports development.

Breakout sessions yesterday included ones on the Sport Ireland Her Moves campaign, coaching pathways and how the Sport Ireland Outdoors Unit can support activities, as well as sessions on encouraging volunteer engagement post Covid and on Women’s Sport.

Today there will be sessions on creativity in Sport, the importance of physical literacy and on diversity and inclusion, as well as on behavioural insights on participation and ion bridging the gap between academic research and what is happening on the ground.

The work that goes on at local and often hyper local level in terms of activities to get people involved in sport and physical activity is immense.

At a meeting of the Dublin City Council Sport and Wellbeing Partnership Board yesterday we heard presentations on a top class sports and wellbeing programme delivered by the Council sports staff and TU Dublin for over 200 first year Deis School students in the City Centre and about an innovative Sport and Arts programme running across multiple projects, as well as the hundreds of programmes that are taking place every week, often away from the spotlight but no less important for that.

Anything that helps sporting bodies and those delivering the programmes to work closer together and learn from the wins and the setbacks that others have experienced can only be a good thing and fair play to Director of Participation Louise Burke and the Sport Ireland team for pulling such a varied and informative programme together.