Supportive participation (How you can help)

Roles and Responsibilities in Your Club

Parental involvement is crucial to every club. Regardless of the organizational model of the club, parents play key support roles. In parent owned clubs, parents are needed in leadership roles as board members and committee leaders. Regardless of structure, clubs are looking for volunteers to help with swim meets, coordinate social events and organize fundraising. 

Getting involved with your child's club is a great way to meet people, have fun and teach your child about commitment. Many swim parents develop long-term friendships and enjoy the family-like atmosphere that develops when people work together. Working at a meet can be a lot more fun than sitting in the stands! Additionally, when your child sees you devoting time and energy to help the team, he or she understands that team loyalty is important and worthwhile.

  1. 1.How can we help support the team?

Shamu always requires suggestions about fundraising. How about initiating a fundraising committee, or even a social committee? Volunteer your services. Please don't wait to be approached, and when approached don't commit and then withdraw at the last minute. Support of all Shamu swimmers would be great. Stick together as a team and create a team spirit envied by all. We attempt to create what we call a "Shamu Village" where all parents/swimmers sit together, join in this spirit and get to know the members from your team.

The benefits are twofold: 1) you get to know team members and their children. 2) You have the opportunity to be in contact with the coach.

  1. 2.It looks like it takes an awful lot of people to run a meet. What can I do to help?

If you have already attended a meet, you have probably been approached to be a time keeper. This is a great way to begin to help run meets. In fact, this is how many officials get started. Officials are a necessary part of every type of competition. Here is a list of the officiating positions:

  1. BulletOrder and Chief Timekeeper:

  2. BulletStarters assistant

  3. BulletTime Keeper

  4. BulletChief Timekeeper

  5. BulletStarter

  6. BulletStroke and turn judges

  7. BulletData Processor

  8. BulletReferee

If you are interested to become an official please contact the Team Manager or chairman for further information.

If Shamu hosts an event, you may also be able to help in the following areas: 

  1. BulletSoliciting sponsorship

  2. BulletAssisting during the setting up and breaking down before and after gala

  3. BulletCatering

  4. BulletMeet results/awards

  5. BulletSelling of programs

3. What does it take to be an official?

Take the seat, volunteer, ask what is required, put your name on the first Officials clinic (you needn’t have to have attended an officials clinic to volunteer/time-keep, but take the next step in attending when available), Register (see registrations procedures)! Practice, as in anything if you aren’t on pool-deck doing your share, you will never be an accomplished official. You will then become certified (not necessarily accomplished) by the LPA (Limpopo Province Aquatics).LPA establishes its own criteria for training and certifying its officials. The national standards are ensured through taking a series of tests. Officials are trained to be competent in their knowledge of the rules and protocol involved in each position. This consistency if fostered through SSA (Swimming South Africa) and LPA officials workshops. If you are really interested in becoming an official, speak with one of the officials during a break at your next meet. 

4. Our coach misses practice to go to an “Provincial/National” meeting/swim meet. What is that? What is involved?

Let’s begin by telling a little about how SSA Swimming is organized.  SSA is the national governing body for the sport of swimming. In this capacity, SSA formulates rules, implements policies and procedures, conducts national championships and offers a variety of services and programs to enhance the swimming experience of all members. SSA is made up of different Provincial bodies.  

The reason your coach and hopefully another representative of your team attend these important meetings is to keep informed as well as participate in all the activities of LPA/SSA.

The Provincial body makes decisions such as funding swimmers to national meets, hosting meets and registering all swimmers with SSA through a local registration person and much more.

5. I have just been asked to volunteer myself as a candidate for the committee. What kind of commitment will this mean?

Becoming a member of the club’s committee is an important decision. This decision requires a consideration and commitment, you can’t teach and expect commitment from your child if you are not able to set an example. Find out from current committee members what their experience has been like. Shamu has predefined roles and responsibilities outlined in the Club Constitution.

6. Support your child

So often parents confuse support with interference and intense pressure to perform. Your duty as a parent is to be someone your child can approach whether he/she has had a good or bad swim without rebuke. Be someone who doesn't try to interfere with the coaches program and training - i.e. don't tell your child how to swim - that is the coaches portfolio. All you will achieve would be to confuse your child. Be someone who is aware of your child's dietary requirements, sleep requirements, comfort requirements; someone who confides in the coach when a possible problem may exist that may influence your child's performance, be it medical, emotional, dietary, etc. Your child's wellbeing and love of the sport is greatly reliant on his/her support base. Your child is a precious gift from above, remember this everyday and treat him/her as such.


7. Parents response to emails and sms

Your quick response is crucial and essential to the organizing of gala's and club activities.


8. Volunteer

Volunteer and commit to what you have responded to. This makes light work for all concerned.

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