A word from our new Regional Bowls Managers

by Michaela Massey on November 11, 2022

Bowls Australia’s Regional Bowls Managers, RBMs for short, play a key role in Bowls Australia’s strategy to support State Associations such as Bowls SA and clubs. The RBM’s role is to work with State Associations and to provide on the ground support to individual clubs with participation and management issues. You can read more about their roles here.

South Australian-based RBMs, Brett Herbert and Daniel Cocks, have had three months on the ground since starting in August 2021 and have taken the opportunity to share their experiences.

Brett Herbert, RBM SA- North and West

Areas covered include Port Augusta, Port Pirie, Broken Hill, Ceduna, Port Lincoln, Renmark

Hello Bowlers,

Well, talk about being chucked in the deep end!

Since starting in August I have visited half-a-dozen clubs or more in each of my 5 regions. My focus was to get to the far extremities of each of the regions. From the northern areas including the picturesque Melrose, and the proactive Booleroo Centre to the most southern of my zone including the breathtaking Barossa clubs like Lyndoch, Mount Pleasant and the Southern Yorke clubs of Edithburgh and Yorketown

My trip west to the unbelievable facilities at Streaky Bay and Ceduna was highlighted by the renowned friendliness across the ‘EP’ with surprising facilities at Kimba and the new synthetic green at Wudinna (as well as a familiar bowler who is the Hotel Barman). Over the next couple of months, while these areas crack into this year’s harvest, I will be heading East, so look out Broken Hill and the Riverland – I’m coming.

However, it’s not just the facilities that surprised me. The people in the clubs are what really drive the passion. I have met some amazing new people and been re-acquainted with school friends in the most unlikely of towns, I have also met members that have known my father, uncle or grandparents for 50+ years. What a small world we live in.

The regeneration of clubs post-covid, has been top of the agenda for many committees. Getting schools and social bowls back on the greens is a real priority. The clubs that have refreshed their approach to barefoot bowls to make it inclusive, fast and fun are reaping the benefits.

The Bowls Australia and Bowls SA teams are amazing. Everyone I have worked with in both organisations has been incredibly helpful and their support has been fantastic.

If any clubs or members would like to contact me regarding club or grant support or participation matters please give me a call.

Hope to see you on the Greens.

Email: bherbert@bowls.com.au
Phone: 0437 527 161

Daniel Cocks, RBM SA- East, South and Metro

Areas covered include Adelaide, Goolwa, McLaren Vale, Victor Harbor, Glenelg, Murray Bridge, Mount Gambier

It’s been a busy 3 months since starting with Bowls Australia in August, as one of the two new Regional Bowls Managers in South Australia.

I’ve worked with community sports clubs for over 12 years in my previous two roles, as well as having served on the committee and been involved with my own club for more than 30 consecutive years (I feel old!). It’s been interesting to see the commonalities between all sports and some of the shared issues that affect everyone – increasing members and volunteers, improving facilities and assistance in financing large projects. These have certainly dominated my conversations with clubs so far!

To that end, it’s been fantastic to hear the ‘good news’ stories as I travel around to clubs and witness the amount of ‘blood, sweat and tears’ that goes into running them. Volunteers are the lifeblood of any community club and we are lucky to have some of the best in the business.

I have been concentrating my initial visits in the metro Adelaide region, as well as the southern areas of the State. I have been amazed at the efforts that go into running your clubs and the pride and hard work going on daily to make them not only survive but flourish. I have discussed some of the Bowls Australia and Bowls SA’s programs that clubs might use to try and increase membership, as well as some specific information on grants and funding that clubs can access. Social media and promotions are a huge factor in helping your club thrive and I’ve enjoyed discussing with clubs the ways to best do them.

I have visited many schools in my region to promote the Bowls Australia ‘Rookie Rollers’ program, which aims to make the sport of bowls accessible and fun to school-aged children. It’s been fantastic to hear how many clubs have built a relationship with some of their local secondary schools to further promote the sport.

Over the coming weeks and months, I am heading off to Keith to attend the Bowls SA Seniors Supa Series event, a Regional Bowls Manager conference in Melbourne where I’ll be able to share stories and ideas with other Bowls Australia RBM’s from all over the country and I’ll be making plans to visit some of my furthest regions in the South, South East and Murray Mallee.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me at any time, particularly around club support, participation, grants and promotional assistance.

Email: dcocks@bowls.com.au
Phone: 0427 623 904