Island games organisers look to Jersey’s Fastest family fun day for new talent.
In the run up to the find Jersey’s Fastest event to be held at FB Fields on 23 September, we ask Steve Jacobs, Chairman of the Island Games Association, what Jersey is now doing to build sport after the inspiration of the London 2012 Olympic Games
Q: What is your full job title, please?
A: I’m Chairman of the Island Games Association of Jersey and also a Member of the 2015 Nat West Island Games Organising Committee
Q: So can you please describe your role?
A: My main aim is to act as liaison with the other 23 participating Islands and the International Island Games Association (IIIGA).
With the assistance of the Island Games Association of Jersey Executive Committee, my job is to facilitate maximum participation in the 14 nominated sports at each games and to organise travel, accommodation and fundraising for the Jersey Team.
On another level, I’m also responsible for promoting the Island Games ethos within the Island to the widest possible audience
Q: How do you think it will change sport in Jersey hosting the Island Games in 2015
A: The 2015 Organising Committee have already had meetings with most of the sports participating in 2015 and everyone we have spoken to is very enthusiastic to put on the best games possible for our visiting islands , showcase Jersey and our sporting heritage and produce development plans not only for the 2015 games but for youngsters in general. There is no doubt that interest levels in general are much higher following Team GB’s performance at the London 2012 Games which has clearly had an inspirational effect – we now want to capitalise on that to bring new talent through
Q; How important are events like the find Jersey’s fastest to help “inspire a generation” following the London 2012 games?
A: In the Majority of cases, facilities are there, coaches are in place and help and assistance is there in abundance. What we need to do is to motivate the youth of the Island through the media, through schools, parents and advertising to get out and get involved. Jersey’s Fastest is a community event the whole family can get involved in and we hope it will inspire all generations young and old to get involved in sport. It is a first for the Jersey Spartans Athletics Club and we are all looking forward to it immensely.
Q: What will help you to continue the motivation into 2015?
A: In addition to regular meetings and progress monitoring development plans we would like core sponsors behind us. Most sports have some connection with a “patron” sponsor. We are extremely lucky to have Santander Private Banking sponsoring the Jersey Spartan Athletic Club. This is a great example of how local organisations can help with the development of sport. We also have the “One Foundation” which is providing sponsorship support to the Jersey Island Games team as a whole.
But we also need the local community and Government to fully support us. The benefits to the island economy and the health and discipline of the younger generation are immeasurable.
Q: In which sports do you think Jersey will excel over the next 3 years?
A: Hopefully in many. We need fresh blood to be coming through all the time. New entrants into all sport will raise the standard and increase the performance of some of our current “stars”. The idea you have to fight for a place in the team is one of our goals.
The Jersey’s Fastest event is a perfect example of how a community family event can help us to spot talent for future Island Games and continue the legacy of the London 2012 Olympics.
To take part in the Jersey’s Fastest, visit the Spartan Athletics Club website at www.jerseyspartan.com where full details, entry forms and information about the event are available.