Sports clubs are at the heart of local communities up and down the country.  It is where the essence of sport and its many benefits can be most clearly seen.

Starting today, as part of a new focus on the work of clubs and how they operate, Sport for Business will carry a daily feature highlighting the activities that clubs across all sports and in every corner of the country are bringing to life.

The Sports Club Hub will develop over the coming weeks and months to provide a full suite of supports and services for those who are doing what they can on the ground, day in, day out,  to bring sport to life for every level of society.


The RTÉ Sunday Game at the weekend carried a feature about the impact that the lockdown has had on three clubs across the country.

They spoke with players and officials from Sarsfields in Galway, Kilcoo in Down and Ballymun Kickhams in Dublin about the challenges they have faced and the fears they have for the future.

The Chair of Sarsfields raised the issue of the €9,000 they had paid into the Player Insurance Fund and whether that was likely to be credited for next year given that there has been no training or matches.

The financial side was covered but also the fear that some would not return and of missing out on a year of young children coming in at the end of the summer.

The piece referenced back to the interview which GAA President John Horan had given on the programme in its first show of the summer season in May.



The Great Community Challenge

The Great Community Challenge is an online game show fundraiser which launched today to enable sports clubs, charities and community organisations to deliver their fundraising virtually.

It will seek to offset the financial and community spirit damage left in the wake of COVID-19.

By following the fundraising model each organisation will be guaranteed fundraising of €5,000 with a chance to get much more.

The Great Community Challenge will see local club members and groups come together virtually to compete in a game show format and raise money for their chosen organisation.

Each organisation will be in with a chance of winning €50,000. Contestants will be tested mentally and physically with questions, puzzles, a talent competition and a variety of other entertaining virtual challenges.

Each organisation can rally up to 150 households to help them on their quest of winning the top prize. The entrance fee per household is €40 and by signing up 150 households to take part they will be guaranteed to raise €5,000 for their organisation, with the additional €1,000 covering costs and contributing to the national prize.

“We work with hundreds of organisations every year to host fundraising events around Ireland,” said Eric Cunningham, CEO of Empower Events who have launched the new initiative.

“As a result of the pandemic and the related Government directives the impact on local clubs and organisations has been catastrophic.”

“Many sports clubs are the lifeblood of their community and at this time of year fundraising is vital for the season ahead. Without a move to virtual fundraising, there is a very real risk to their viability. Our hope is that the Great Community Challenge will allow these organisations to replace the loss of earnings from their more traditional fundraising.”

How The Great Community Challenge will work

12 organisations from each county will take part in their county finals. Each individual household from the comfort of their own home will take part in physical and mental challenges to earn points for their community group to help their organisation get into the top two in the county.

The top two organisations from each county will go forward to the grand final to compete against the rest of the country to win the top prize of €50,000. It is anticipated some 42,000 households and 240 community organisations will get involved a target of 1.5Million euro being raised

The Great Community Challenge is devised and managed by Empower Events Ltd, a company which is known across the Island of Ireland for its work within the Fundraising Events business. Last year it helped raise a 7 figure sum for deserving sports organisations, schools and charities throughout Ireland.

Entries can be made at

Look back on our interview with Cunningham talking about the launch and stay with us for updates as it develops through the summer months.


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