Galway Tribes win Gala Gifts for Clubs cash prize

19 Oct 2022

While Covid put a stop to all club activity the majority of clubs were focussing their attention on online activities and counting down the days 'til they could reopen. However, Galway Tribes potentially had a bigger problem on their hands.

Losing three valued committee members, a venue closing down and athletes deciding to pursue other sports, Galway Tribes were on the brink of closure- a nightmare scenario for any club. However, not totally ready to admit defeat some members of the club management team agreed to give it one more push...

Thankfully the story has a happy ending.

The club elected a new management team who worked tirelessly for 6 months filling in forms, putting Covid procedures in place, submitting grant requests, and engaging with Basketball Ireland on the use of venue and coaches.  It was a mountain to climb and a lot of hard work but from the ashes, the new club has arisen.

Lockdown was really hard on everyone and as a club, we've been through so many struggles in the past year - losing our coach, venue, volunteers, and some fellow athletes. 

We hit rock bottom and when faced with the sink or swim options we decided to fly!  As hard as it has been, I also feel like it has helped us to grow really close as a unit.  We're all just so grateful to be back and doing what we love so we're putting that all behind us and it's just big smiles playing together and being there for each other week after week. This group of athletes is absolutely fantastic and I think it's safe to say that we all live for our Thursday evening

Mairead Daly, Coach

All the hard work has paid off and everyone is delighted to be back playing basketball. Training sessions take place each week; athletes, volunteers, coaches, and guardians alike, everyone is in such great spirits and so thankful to be back.  Looking back it's a phenomenal achievement to get the club back up and running again and we are excited to see what the future brings us when the new season starts up again.

It's wonderful to have our basketball team back again in a safe and well-organized facility.  Parents enjoy the social aspect too.

Teresa Lynch, Parent

It's great to get back to training with my team mates. I missed it very much.

James O'Callaghan, Athlete

The club isn't just content being back at weekly training. Four female athletes tried out in the Connacht advancement event for the World Games and all four came home successful with a gold medal each much to the delight of their fellow athletes. 

Losing athletes from a club is always a sad occasion however since returning, they have already opened their doors to five new athletes and are continually receiving enquiries. Before the summer holidays, the club celebrated with an awards ceremony to acknowledge the participation and hard work but also the resilience of each athlete shown.

Galway Tribes still have lots of room to grow. They plan to spend the Gala Gifts for Clubs cash prize on more basketballs so every player can have their own ball for training drills.

The club has big plans for the year ahead. They've started reaching out to all the Special Olympics basketball clubs in Connacht with a view to starting a blitz. They have contacted some new inclusion clubs in Basketball Ireland in Munster to see if there is interest in having some inter-club matches. 

Finally, they are settling into their new home in Claregalway and constantly welcoming new members and volunteers. 

Collage of four photos showing athletes smiling to camera