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World GAA Launch Strategic Plan for 2024-2026

Thu 22nd Feb

Gill Waters


World GAA has today launched its first Strategic Plan, the document charts a strategic direction for the seven international units and 475 clubs in World GAA from 2024 – 2026.

The launch held ahead of Congress at the Canal Court, Co Down was attended by Uachtarán Larry McCarthy along with representatives of GAA World Council where details of the plan were announced.

The strategy features a variety of objectives to realise the GAA’s vision as a sustainable community-based and volunteer-led Association where as many as possible, participate in Gaelic games and culture for as long as possible, across the globe.

The World GAA Strategic Plan is a comprehensive blueprint that outlines the goals, objectives, and strategies for the development and growth of Gaelic games worldwide. This strategic plan aims to strengthen both the global reach and the impact of the GAA through a variety of key pillars and actions. With a focus on promoting Gaelic games on an international scale, the strategic plan emphasises the importance of recruitment, participation, retention, increasing awareness, and fostering strong organisational structures in regions outside of Ireland. By nurturing and supporting the growth of Gaelic Football, Hurling, Camogie, LGFA, and Handball across the globe, World GAA aims to create a vibrant global community.

The strategic plan recognises the significance of youth development programs and initiatives, aiming to provide young players with the necessary skills, resources, and opportunities to excel in Gaelic games. In doing so, World GAA aims to secure its future and cultivate a new generation of passionate athletes and ambassadors. The plan also focuses on the importance of governance and transparent decision-making processes within the GAA. By fostering effective communication, ensuring accountability, and embracing diversity and inclusion, the organisation seeks to cultivate an environment that promotes collaboration and drives the sustainable growth of Gaelic games worldwide.

Four strategic themes, each with underlying objectives, have been identified by the World GAA Council and these will form the core of operational activity areas across the globe for the next three years.

The four key themes are:

  • Coaching and Games
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • PR and Communications
  • Officer Training

Uachtarán CLG Larry McCarthy said: “The GAA is the greatest community-based, inter-generational and volunteer led organisation in the world – bar none. For 140 years it has grown to dominate the landscape of Ireland from Bishopstown to East Belfast, and from Ballymun to Ballina and everywhere in between. Not only that, the GAA and Gaelic games are a global phenomenon with more than 450 clubs providing games, a sense of community and support in towns and cities all over the world.

“The World GAA Strategic Plan is a visionary document.  It is a roadmap to strengthen our existing roots internationally, and to encourage World GAA to boldly go in search of new territories where our magnificent games of hurling, football and camogie, and the ethos of Where We All Belong can have an inspirational impact.  The pillars focusing on coaching and games, health and well-being, officer training and PR and communications offer a solid foundation to build upon.

“The sun never sets on World GAA and this plan has the potential to provide more clubs, more teams and more friends to the international Gaelic games family.

“Ar aghaidh linn le chéile.”

Speaking on behalf of the Ladies Gaelic Football Association, Uachtarán Cumann Peil Gael na mBan, Mícheál Naughton, added: “We are delighted to lend our support to this Strategic Plan – and we will be on hand to assist in any way that we can.

“Having been fortunate as an Association to embark on a number of All Star tours on foreign shores, we have never failed to be impressed by the wonderful work that is being undertaken by our International units.

“We have always been welcomed with open arms and the meticulous planning and attention to detail that goes into the running of Gaelic Games on a global basis has to be seen to be believed.

“This Strategic Plan has the ability to make a long-lasting impact and further embed our sports in communities around the world where Gaelic Games are a core element of everyday life.

“What has also struck us is the growing numbers of indigenous players who are embracing Gaelic Games and becoming extremely proficient.

“We look forward to seeing more and more people playing Gaelic Games in these international hotbeds and this Strategic Plan will play a key role in ensuring that this happens.

“I would also like to acknowledge the exceptional work of the World GAA Council in putting together what can only be described as an outstanding blueprint for the continued development of Gaelic Games on an international basis.”

And Hilda Breslin, President of the Camogie Association, said:

“I am pleased to see the launch of the World GAA Strategic Plan 2024-2026 today. The plan places a significant importance on four key themes which will ensure the objective of a community-based and volunteer-led Association will be met. It is crucial that participation in Gaelic Games is available to all.”

“As the number of Camogie Clubs across the international stage continues to grow, it is of the utmost importance that we provide our Camogie players with the required resources and opportunities to play and prosper in our great sport. I look forward to seeing the global community that this plan aims to build upon and seeing Camogie grow on the global stage.”

In summary, the World GAA Strategic Plan serves as a comprehensive roadmap, guiding the efforts of the GAA in expanding the reach and impact of Gaelic games internationally. By focusing on participation, awareness, youth development, and governance, the plan lays the foundation for a vibrant future for Gaelic games across the globe.

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