Inner city based City of Birmingham Hockey Club have been crowned European Hockey Federation Small Club of the Year 2021. Established in 2019 and merging with the then Yardley Hockey Club (Founded 1932), City of Birmingham HC boasts 3 ladies teams, 2 mens teams and a youth academy in what is it’s third full season under its new name. Working in areas where communities have a low socio-economic background and are ethically diverse, CoB has been working to ensure its membership is reflective of today’s society as well as bringing hockey to communities that may not otherwise access the sport.
During the pandemic, CoB set its sights on growing its support for members and the community, putting wellbeing at the forefront of their work. Setting up a Mental Health First Aid team with trained members on hand to offer support and guidance and to listen to members and the community who were finding times difficult. This coupled with Hockey sessions over zoom, online social events and virtual gatherings, the club were committed to ensuring members stayed connected. As lockdown eased, the club quickly got training underway under the guidelines and offered hockey packs for new members at no cost to them, to help new members take up the sport at the club.
Chairman of the Men’s and Junior Section, Jeevan Chagger said: “City of Birmingham Hockey Club is delighted to have been named the European Hockey Federation Small Club of the Year 2021. Over the last few years, we have been working tirelessly to provide community hockey for all. Through restructuring and re-development of the club, we have now set foundations to continue to have a growing positive impact in our local areas. Behind the scenes, there are many volunteers who have worked and continue to work tirelessly, with drive and dedication and this award highlights their work and all our members who joined us to enjoy hockey. As we celebrate 90 years of history in 2022, this motivates us further to continue our positive impact and it is a huge honour for us, we could not be happier! We would like to thank all club members, volunteers, sponsors and supporters for helping bring the club to where it is today”