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Sport in the Community

Sport in the Community

UCD sports clubs actively engage with the local community, using sports to benefit both the community and students. This involvement provides valuable life skills and benefits the operations of sports clubs by allowing members to utilize and develop their skills. Various forms of engagement include beach cleanups, coaching local sports clubs, and more.

To explore volunteering opportunities and avail the benefits of involvement, please refer to the Volunteering Opportunities section. Additionally, learn more about the numerous benefits of getting involved in the local community in the Why Get Involved section.

UCD Community Engagement Report 22-23

Throughout the 2022-23 academic year, the UCD Athletic Union Council and its affiliated sports clubs made significant contributions to the local community through various innovative initiatives. In alignment with the AUC's strategic priority of Volunteerism and Support Services, the UCD AUC offers training and development opportunities to equip and support its sports club members in actively engaging and leading community projects.

Over 250 dedicated UCD sports club volunteers generously contribute their time each week to coach within UCD sports clubs. Many of these volunteers also extend their commitment to the local community, fostering strong connections through their efforts, including UCD TaeKwon-Do, UCD Football, UCD Volleyball, UCD GAA, and UCD Men's Basketball. Examples of their impactful work include designing GAA coaching programs for Uganda GAA through regular Zoom sessions (UCD GAA), assisting in organising and running regattas (UCD Ladies Boat), umpiring competitions (UCD Taekwon-Do), providing safety at Liffey Descent races (UCD Canoe), providing coaches for the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown After School Through Sports programme (UCD Soccer, assisting in judging and timekeeping at intercollegiate and intervarsity events (UCD Karate), contributing to planning the Leinster Orienteering Championships (UCD Orienteering) and volunteering at Parkrun Irish Mountain Running Association events (UCD Mountaineering).

Cancer charities remain a popular choice for fundraising in our sports clubs. UCD Men's and Women's Rugby clubs, along with Tag Rugby and students from the BSc in Sports and Exercise Management, collaborated to raise over €18,000 for the Irish Cancer Society during the annual Daffodil Day. UCD Surf and UCD Tennis participated in the Irish Cancer Society Relay For Life, a global initiative that honours cancer survivors, remembers loved ones, and raises awareness about the Irish Cancer Society's services. UCD Karate Club members participated in the Great Pink Run and UCD Ladies Hockey through their Pink Week both raised funds Breast Cancer Ireland. UCD Fencing donated the proceeds from their Colours event to the Irish Cancer Society.

UCD Men's Hockey, UCD Sailing, and UCD Trampoline actively participated in the Movember campaign, a month-long initiative that supports men's health issues including mental health, prostate cancer, and testicular cancer. Their involvement helped raise both funds and awareness for these important causes.

To honour and support women in sport at UCD, the UCD AUC launched the Women In Sport Campaign, offering branding templates and a participation guide to its affiliated clubs. Over twenty UCD sports clubs enthusiastically participated in the week-long campaign, making it a resounding success. As part of the initiative and in celebration of International Women's Day, UCD Karate organised a complimentary karate and self-defence class.

UCD Table Tennis loaned and arranged equipment for Special Olympics Ireland's training and development program on a monthly basis. UCD Sailing actively participated in the Darkness into Light campaign. UCD Mountaineering generously donated the profits from their t-shirt sales to support Mountain Rescue. Members of UCD Sub Aqua participated in the Santa Dive event and provided a boat for assistance, all in support of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

UCD Archery and UCD Fencing clubs joined forces to raise funds for the Turkey Syria earthquake charity. In addition, UCD Fencing organised an in-house competition to support the Irish Heart Foundation. UCD Trampoline held a Dragons Den event to raise funds for Aware, an organisation that offers free support and information for individuals experiencing depression or bipolar disorder, as well as their loved ones. UCD Karate organised a range of activities including Laughter Yoga, a hike, pub quizzes, and self-defence classes, all with the goal of raising funds for the Huntington's Disease Association of Ireland.

Volunteering Opportunities

To assist you in getting involved in a voluntary capacity we have provided you with a list of current options below.

Volunteer with the Local Sports Partnership

Why Volunteer for Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown (DLR) Sports Partnership?

  • Volunteers are an important resource when it comes to developing opportunities for sport and physical activity participation. Sport relies heavily on the time and commitment provided by volunteers. 
  • Volunteers provide a unique service to DLR Sports Partnership, the benefits of which are difficult to quantify. If you are interested in volunteering contact DLR Sports partnership on 01 271 9502 or email sportspartnership@dlrcoco.ie.
Volunteer with Studentvolunteer.ie
  • (opens in a new window)Studentvolunteer.ie is a network of Higher Education Institutions that have come together to create an online resource to connect students to community groups, charities, schools, public bodies and NGO's.  
  • Once registered you can browse through a database of volunteering opportunities, including those in the area of sport and recreation, and sign up to become a volunteer.
  • visit their website for more information.

Why Get Involved

There are many benefits to getting involved with the community through your sports club. Using sport to benefit communities and life skills is mutually beneficial for the local community and for students themselves. This engagement can also assist the operations of the UCD Sport clubs through providing the members with an opportunity to utilise and develop their skills. 

Throughout the years many UCD students benefited the local community through their involvement in a variety of ways, whilst at the same time developing their own skill set.  

Learning Outcomes
  • Positive impact on students’ academic learning.
  • Improves students’ ability to apply what they have learned in 'the real world'.
  • Positive impact on academic outcomes such as demonstrated complexity of understanding, problem analysis, problem-solving, critical thinking, and cognitive development.
  • Improved ability to understand complexity and ambiguity
Personal Outcomes
  • Greater sense of personal efficacy, personal identity, spiritual growth, and moral development.
  • Greater interpersonal development, particularly the ability to work well with others, and build leadership and communication skills.
Social Outcomes
  • Reduced stereotypes and greater inter-cultural understanding.
  • Improved social responsibility and citizenship skills.
  • Greater involvement in community service after graduation.
Career Development
  • Connections with professionals and community members for learning and career opportunities.
  • Greater academic learning, leadership skills, and personal efficacy can lead to greater opportunity.
Relationship with the Institution
  • Stronger relationships with faculty.
  • Greater satisfaction with college.
  • Improved graduation rates.

Contact UCD Sport

Sports Office, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
T: +353 1 716 2183 | E: sport@ucd.ie | Location Map(opens in a new window)