UKAF Volleyball Association Success
After a hugely encouraging first season as one of the newest UK Armed Forces representative sports, the SSAFA-supported UKAF Volleyball Association shares their excitement and ambitions for the coming season.
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Air Commodore Chris Jones, the UKAF Volleyball Chairman, is delighted with the achievements of their Men’s and Ladies teams in 2017/18. "I didn’t think we would have such an impact on the civilian National Volleyball League competitions," he says, with a big smile on his face.
"To win matches against well-established club sides from the higher divisions in the NVL gave us great confidence. Having our Men’s team celebrated as 'Team of the Weekend' across the whole league early in the season was a tremendous boost.
"But it was the Ladies who progressed the furthest, reaching Round Three of the Plate competition and generating huge respect from their opponents for the spirit, discipline and teamwork they showed on and off the court. I couldn’t be more proud."
A win-win partnership
The support of SSAFA has allowed UKAF Volleyball to hit the ground running and quickly establish their credentials with Volleyball England, the national governing body.
Chris adds: "Volleyball England is very keen to work with the Armed Forces on the development programmes for their national representative teams. We can help with access to training facilities and supporting their fixtures. And our players and officials would benefit enormously from shared coaching sessions and training matches with the very best volleyballers in England. A win-win all round."
As well as developing the relationship with Volleyball England and progressing further in the National Volleyball League Cup, UKAF Volleyball wants to run courses to generate more qualified coaches in the Forces and to develop more participation at the grass-roots level.
"We want to give more service men and women the opportunity to grow as individuals and excel as team members through volleyball," explains Chris. "Thanks to SSAFA, we can give them the best kit and equipment to support their participation in representative sport and enhance their personal contribution to the Armed Forces.
"All our players and officials are so grateful to SSAFA and are proud to play with the SSAFA logo on their shirts. Hopefully we can remind everyone of the fantastic work the charity does, for the younger Armed Forces generation as well as our veterans."
Good luck from SSAFA!
Supporting UKAF Volleyball helps raise the profile of SSAFA across the current serving population and out into parts of the civilian community that might otherwise be missed. We are proud of his flourishing partnership that marries the reputation of the UK Armed Forces for sporting excellence with SSAFA. We wish the UKAF Volleyball teams the best of luck for the coming season!