Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Becky finds recruits in Malawi

One of Victoria Park’s senior athletes and lead coach of our disability group, Becky Dunphy, who’s also coached by our Club President Graham Smith has been involved in a charity called the Dalitso Project for the last 11 years.  This charity is a very small organisation, founded in her home town of Arbroath, and it works primarily with orphans in Malawi, central Africa. 

The Dalitso project looks after more than 300 orphans in Malawi, many of whom have no living relatives and who would not be able to go to school without support.  Most of the children are day-care which means that they come each day to the centre to receive food and lessons as well as clothes, school books, fees and soap.  Some children however have either no living relatives, or come from home situations where they are not wanted or have not been treated well.  These children live in supported residences with their adoptive parents at Thyolo and Kambilonjo.

When Becky visits the projects (each year) she stays at each of the residential homes and every morning (around 4.45am) for the last 5 or 6 years, when she gets up to do her training (as per Graham’s instructions), she has a band of training partners racing her wherever she goes!  Which is always annoying when she’s struggling up a hillside at altitude and some wee kids come tearing alongside her! 

For the last few years she’s been trying to put her coaching skills to good use and give these youngsters some running sessions to work on and some encouragement to keep working on their natural talent! 

When the Victoria Park committee heard about Becky’s involvement with the Dalitso Project they were keen to offer support.  Club Secretary Gordon Innes met with our sponsor Katie Alexander of Achilles Heel and they identified about 60 unsold club training tops which were a previous design.  Katie was happy to assist and they passed the tops to Becky in August last year.

Becky Dunphy

The Dalitso project send a container every year to Malawi with clothes, toys, books and medical equipment (amongst other things) and they aim to send the container at the end of September each year so that it will reach Malawi in time for Christmas (as the sponsors from their sponsor-a-child program all send Christmas presents each year). The 2017 container actually left in early September and should have arrived in plenty of time for Christmas, but unfortunately a terrible storm hit the port in Durban, South Africa whilst the container was docked there, and the container ended up stranded in the badly damaged port, until the port could be repaired.  This delayed the container by about 6 weeks unfortunately and so it didn’t arrive in Malawi until the end of January.

Luckily for Becky, that meant that her visit in early February this year coincided with the unpacking of the container and the distributing of the many things that so many generous people in Scotland had donated.  She was therefore able to train with a squad of athletes and give out the Victoria Park training tops!  She assured us that they went down a treat!  Suddenly everyone in the village wanted to join her training squad! 

Becky thanked everyone at Victoria Park and Achilles Heel for the support and for helping an aspiring bunch of poor young athletes look so smart!

Well done Becky, so glad you’re such a big part of Victoria Park.


Energy Efficient Cooling

Iain Burr, one of our coaches and committee members and father of Katie Burr has made a very generous financial contribution to the club on behalf of Energy Efficient Cooling of Killearn.

This has allowed the club to purchase 80 Hi Vis vests which should be used by all of our coaching groups who leave the confines of the Stadium to train during the hours of darkness.

The vests are extremely well designed and are adjustable to fit athletes of all shapes and sizes.  Coaches are reminded that the vests will be stored within the equipment store at the South West end of the indoor track.

We're very grateful to Iain and EEC once again for this very generous gift.


Competition Selection Policy

The aim of this statement is to provide an understanding for parents and athletes of the process employed by VP-Glasgow Team Managers when selecting athletes to compete for the Club.

The club participates in the following leagues:

  • SAIL (Indoor League) (U11 to U20) 3 matches and a final.
  • YDL (U13 & U15) 3 matches and a final.
  • YDL (U17 & U20) 3 matches and a final.
  • CSSAL (U11 to Masters) 3 matches.
  • SWAL (Women’s League) (U13 to Masters) 3 matches.
  • SAL (Men’s League) (U17 to Seniors) 4 matches.
  • UKWAL (Female Only) (Seniors) 3 matches.


Save for relay events only 2 athletes will be selected per event.

The selection process begins with the relevant team manager reviewing the performances recorded by athletes across events organised and run under UK Rules for Competition, which may subsequently be eligible for recording on Power of 10.

Where no evidence from recent performances at recognised competition is available or where a coach has observed a noticeable improvement in form, performances at training sessions will be taken into consideration by the team manager in selecting athletes.

Teams will be selected on the principle and basis of having the best potential to achieve the highest possible placing for the club in the relevant league.

From a club perspective this system is used to ensure we field the strongest team for meetings.  For the athlete it ensures fairness and expectation; encourages participation and sets a benchmark for standards.

The overall needs of the Club may be considered when making team selections in line with Club priorities and its values and ethos of competition for all.

Where an athlete can be considered for selection to a number of events e.g. top ranked in a number of events, the athlete (or their parent/coach) should be given the choice of event(s) and the remainder may be filled with the 2nd choice athlete if it’s not going to be detrimental to the team.

The final decision on team selection lies with the team manager.

Athletes who are selected to race and commit to attending but fail to show without communicating their non-attendance and/or without a reasonable explanation, will not be selected to compete at the next event regardless of their availability.

Team managers are encouraged to seek updates on training performances from coaches and to keep records of their athletes personal best times and distances.

Athletes are encouraged to participate in open graded meetings and championship races to obtain official times and/or distances. A timetable of events can be viewed on the Scottish Athletics website events page.

The roll of parents is to support and encourage their children to take part in Sport. They should also support their child’s coaches and team managers. Remember that everyone connected to the club is a volunteer and deserves to be treated with respect.

Any athlete (or parent of a younger athlete) who has a grievance with regard to Team Selection should, in the first instance, discuss this with the Team Manager. It is hoped that most problems can be resolved at this stage.

Should a grievance be unresolved or continue beyond this discussion, the individual (or their parents) should write to the Clubs Committee in line with the Clubs Grievance Procedure.

If parents are in any doubt about how they should approach the team manager or coaches, they are advised to read our code of conduct for parents and carers which is available on our website via the menu/rules.


Gordon Innes

Club Secretary

New Road Running Group

Victoria Park are preparing to setup a new Road Running section primarily for senior athletes and we're hoping to recruit heavily from our members parents.

The group will be based at Scotstoun and will be open to all levels of ability. Whether you’re starting out in running for fitness or health or wanting to improve your 10k time, we’re hoping to give you all the help and support you need to meet your targets.

We hope to recruit jog leaders, coaches and runners. The club will pay for any coaching courses that are required.

We hope to recruit most of the group from within the large number of parents and existing senior members currently training at other venues.

At this point in time we’re looking for volunteers who would like to get involved. Once we’ve got the names of a few interested parties, we’ll be arranging a meeting to discus which nights we’ll train, what routes we’ll run, how many will need to be trained as jog leaders or coaches and how much we’ll charge for membership.

The jog leaders, like the runners will have to be of mixed ability. We wouldn’t expect an elite athlete to set the pace for a beginner and that’s why we need volunteers with varying levels of fitness and experience.

The management at Scotstoun have agreed to let the group assemble, leave belongings and warmup within the confines of the stadium without charge.

Anyone who would like to be involved should express their interest in an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please state if you’re primarily interested in being a jog leader (one day course) or if you just want to enjoy the running.


Gordon Innes
Victoria Park City Of Glasgow AC