Hon. Secretary report to AGM 2023
INTRODUCTION / ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
Welcome to all for coming along tonight. I wish to say a special thanks to our chairman who again has been giving his all on behalf of the club throughout the past year. We are very lucky to have such commitment leading us. We are also very grateful for all those who continue to dedicate their time to the club.
We thank in particular David Hughes for his enormous input to our club in different areas, though principally the winter and other training plans that he compiles and manages for us. He is also the guiding light on our working group with Metro St Brigid’s Athletics Club delivering the Porterstown all weather project. I shudder to think what we would have done without him. We thank Christian and Kieran and all their team of coaches for running the academy. We thank all our coaches and managers, without whom this gig would not take place every week of the season. A personal thanks to Peter Hoey who does a lot for the club including running the tuck and Jako shop and works with me in keeping all the fixtures in order for the weekend. Eamonn O’Connor does so much around the club especially as purchasing officer, I would not know where to start in thanking him, suffice to say we are very grateful for his being a real club man. David Curran has been acting as our administrator for over a year now and he does a wonderful job which helps the club be the well oiled machine it is, again we thank him. Jim Geraghty continues to be a great servant of the club, particularly in charge of clubhouse personnel and maintenance and lots more besides, for which we are very grateful. Paul Mason looks after the finances and we are thankful for that and his general input into club decision making. Simon Bell joined the committee earlier in the season and is proving to be an invaluable addition to the Executive. Thank you Simon. We are missing John O’Leary but we expect him back in harness before long.
FOOTBALL FOR ALL
I am delighted to be involved in the football for all section, and we are really thankful to Massimo Larini, Richie Coakley and Stephen King for coming on board with our weekly training and I think our players are benefiting from their expertise and more importantly enjoying every minute of it. The children now participate in blitzes or league games once a month, with training on the other Saturdays. We are hoping we can train on Saturday mornings in future in Laurel Lodge as the lads very much enjoyed being there recently. We are continuing to try to increase the number of kids in our FFA group, so obviously this is a priority for the club as we aim to fulfil our ambition to be truly inclusive as an organisation.
We continue to look for people to take the club forward and up a level, and we are inviting members to step up to join Executive or sub committees. There is a range of activities that you could be involved in like helping to run events like our summer camp in late July. Early July has Philip Zambra in charge of it. Also helping with administration might reduce the workload on some of us who are feeling a bit of wear and tear after over 35 years on the job. There are also areas that we want to drive forward and we are always looking for new ideas to take us up that level, especially as regards football policy matters, and the football committee is certainly an area requiring additional personnel.
We were very pleased to join forces with Bohemian FC in our new partnership which we are confident will bear fruit in time from the point of view of benefits for our players and coaches and our club’s development in general. A special thanks to David Curran and Ray Coyne for their work on this project. We are expecting to finalise our Clubmark accreditation this year, and this prompts me to remind you all that you must complete your GV and SG urgently, please please please.
We are very pleased to see the completion of the upgrade of all weather in Laurel Lodge. I raise my hat to our chairman who took the initiative and drove it forward while some of us were negative about it. Thanks boss for that. A special thank you to Clive Brazier who oversaw this project on our behalf. Great credit to you guys. You will agree that these initiatives and developments together add up to an ambitious programme for the future.
As regards the Porterstown Park all weather project, we are in intensive discussions with our partners MSB finalising the mechanics for managing this new facility and there are a lot of legs to it. We will continue with that work and hopefully Fingal County Council will deliver on their latest promise to open it in May, having missed their earlier targets. We have already appointed a company to instal a booking system for us that will reduce our involvement in this task. We do need volunteers to help with the admin etc associated with it, e.g. vetting applicants re their insurance. I also invite new blood onto our working group for the Porterstown all weather pitch.
Our winter training is ending, we urge you to take care with club equipment, looking after the SSG goals, placing them back in compound efficiently and with care, making sure training poles are not used as javelins by the kids. So be vigilant re health and safety aspects. Generally I would urge all our members to look out for each other and for club equipment and facilities.
CHARITY EVENT GOOD FRIDAY
Finally there is a fund raiser for Spina Bifida on Good Friday in association with Mick Daly’s Castleknock Gym, and we would urge you to support them when we seek donations. We are looking forward to welcoming our local Minister Jack Chambers to the event.
Thank you all again for attending and for all your ongoing help. Remember to keep Brian in your prayers for a speedy recovery after his current treatment, he is one person we cannot afford to be without given his huge contribution to our recent progress with facilities, with coaching and with girls football, to name but a few things he is responsible for. Also, best of luck to our Under-16 Major team who will be playing Waterford’s Bohemians FC in the Quarter final of the SFAI National Trophy. We are all rooting for you after you successfully progressed through the last-16 fixture away in Killarney.