The ‘Kilmeen Kubs’ Nursery Programme — a joint venture run by Kilmeen National School and Kilmeen and Kilbree GAA Club — is a hurling, camogie and football coaching programme that was launched last year.
The coaching takes place over eight weeks with an all-important emphasis on fun activities. Originally it was planned to coach junior and senior infants. However the programme has now been extended to encompass all classes within the school. The support and enthusiasm of all the school staff is critical to ensure this programme is run successfully.
The programme is organised by club coaches/officers Marie Dorgan, Deirdre O’Leary and Claire Collins and the assistance of James McCarthy (GDA) in launching this venture was invaluable. Two other experienced club coaches are involved in the day-to-day coaching, Don McCarthy and John Clancy. A number of transition year students (past pupils of Kilmeen NS) assist at each session, including Niall O’Sullivan, Aoife Dullea, Laura Clancy, Brian Keohane, Darren Santry, Shane Scannell, Oige Scannell, Claire McCarthy and Jonathan Deasy. Typically three of these students assist on a weekly basis. It is great to see these youngsters giving back so much to the youngest children in the community.
In 2013, Kilmeen and Kilbree GAA was one of very few clubs in the entire county to qualify for County Board funding for this project. This funding was allocated to purchasing ‘Hurlog’s’, indoor hurleys which are very useful for the younger classes.
It is evident in the second year of this project how the children in Kilmeen NS have grown in terms of skill and fitness but also in how their confidence has soared. The ‘social element’ of involvement in any team sport is critical and ensures that all children will participate in the long term.
On completion of the ‘Kilmeen Kubs’ programme, all children will receive medals, certificates and laminated photos. The children in Junior and Senior infants also receive free membership of the club. The programme has received a hugely positive response from parents, many of whom were not previously involved with a GAA club. The ‘Kubs’ have received much appreciated publicity in local publications.
A camogie development programme was launched last November, which involved six weeks of intensive camogie coaching for Third to Sixth class. The programme was run with the assistance of Mairead O’Donovan (Cork Camogie Board) and Linda Dorgan (Cork inter-county player). The highlight of the programme was an inter-school blitz, held in January in Ahiohill. All of the girls performed exceptionally well and should be very proud of their efforts.
Kilmeen National School has been involved in many inter-school blitzes, most recently a football blitz in Clonakilty.
The success of the school in Sciath na Scol competitions has been incredible. In 2012, the school won the ‘double’ hurling and football champions and in 2013 they were crowned hurling county champions.
The impact of this programme in Kilmeen and& Kilbree GAA club is as follows: Over forty children now attend U6 and U8 training; Number attending U10 and U12 training have increased; A new Easter Camp will take place from April 22 to 24.; An ever growing Cul Camp (last year over 100 children attended) will take place in the week beginning Monda, July 21.
Involvement in underage ‘monster’ blitzes has grown from entering one team in the past to now entering three!
Increased community involvement – a fundraiser for ‘Kilmeen Kubs’ was held in April 2013 by local musicians. A fun cycle race was run last June raising much needed funds for the club and school.
The Nursery and whole school coaching programme has been hugely successful for all of the children of Kilmeen National School.