The Full Circle of Leadership

Back in the academic year 2005-06 whilst in Primary 1, two young pupils, Emma Waldie and Logan Darling, took advantage of a new Active Schools extra-curricular Baby Volleyball club at Echline Primary School in South Queensferry. 

‘Fast forward a decade and more ……….. guess what?’

Both Emma and Logan through joining the Baby Volleyball Club gained enjoyment, skills, friendships and a love for the sport that has remained with them ever since.

Fast forward a decade and more to 2017 and we find Emma and Logan captaining their respective teams at the UK School Games where they exceeded everyone’s expectations with the girls medalling for the first time in that competition with Bronze and the boys winning an epic final in the tie-break to take Gold! 

They say that the leadership of others starts with leading ourselves. By the time Emma and Logan were captaining school and club sides they had already expressed an interest in coaching the game voluntarily in the Queensferry High School Active Schools programme.

In timely fashion, their club City of Edinburgh Volleyball club had received sportscotland DCI (Direct Club Investment) funding and this allowed them to be supported and mentored through their coaching awards up to UKCC Level II.

And in terms of going full circle ... guess what? The duo will return to their primary school next academic year and take over the coaching of Baby Volleyball where it all began!

volleyball champions holding a trophy and wearing medals, also Echline Primary children playing baby volleyball

To relay their personal opinions on the impact this leadership journey has had on them, Emma and Logan were part of a research programme conducted on behalf of sportscotland. sportscotland has subsequently followed this up by making a short video about Emma. Emma who is a Young Ambassador of Sport has found a love for Beach Volleyball where she represented Team Scotland at the Commonwealth Youth Games 2017 in the Bahamas and has since been called up to represent the Senior National Indoor team. She is also moving on to study PE at university next year.

Footnote: This story has one more lovely twist. Their coach back in 2005 was Heather Brownlee. In her words ‘just a working mother employed in the local bank’ who had volunteered to be the coach at the said Active Schools Baby Volleyball club.

This move was to ultimately inspire Heather to change her world to one of coaching volleyball at a national level and changing career to become the Active Schools Co-ordinator in her hometown of South Queensferry. Now she recruits the volunteers. Truly the full circle of leadership.

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