Watch our hybrid event ‘Promoting Your Sport, Engaging New Audiences and Attracting New Sponsors’

Watch our hybrid event ‘Promoting Your Sport, Engaging New Audiences and Attracting New Sponsors’

The Federation was delighted to host a special member gathering in-person and live streamed event which brought together our members to hear from insights from their peers about increasing your sporting organisation’s commercial viability, delivering successful sporting events, running promotional campaigns, and reaching a wider audience.

We would like to sincerely thank Caroline Donnellan, Director of Marketing and Brand at Sky for sharing their concept and strategy behind their partnership with the FAI Women’s National Team and supporting their World Cup campaign with the multi award winning Outbelieve sponsorship campaign.

  To view the recording click on the image.

The event moderated by Jill Downey, Chief Sustainability and Sponsorship Officer at Core featured a roundtable panel discussion with our members Anne McCormack CEO Hockey Ireland, Nathaniel Cope Head of Communications, Media & Digital Basketball Ireland, Patrick Haslett of Impact3Zero and Andrew May CFO Cricket Ireland. To conclude there was a spotlight on our Partners HBV Live with CEO Heatley Tector, Ross McMullen MD of Camden Promotions and Ronan Burns Head of Sales and Business Development at Future Ticketing.

A huge word of thanks to our hosts at HBV Live for their hospitality, professionalism and excellent studio facilities.

‘Promoting Your Sport, Engaging New Audiences and Attracting New Sponsors’

‘Promoting Your Sport, Engaging New Audiences and Attracting New Sponsors’

The Federation of Irish Sport is looking forward to hosting a hybrid event at HBV Studios on Wednesday 25th October.

In a special member gathering, this event will bring together FIS members to hear from their peers about increasing your sporting organisation’s commercial viability, delivering successful sporting events, running promotional campaigns, and reaching a wider audience. in our case study presentation we will be spotlighting the award winning FAI/SKY Ireland sponsorship campaign #Outbelieve for the WNT in the build up to the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023.

This event will also feature a roundtable panel discussion with our members Anne McCormack CEO Hockey Ireland, Nathaniel Cope Head of Communications, Media & Digital Basketball Ireland, Patrick Haslett of Impact3Zero will be speaking on behalf of Volleyball Ireland who are currently developing a sustainability strategy linked directly to their commercial sponsorship offering and Andrew May CFO Cricket Ireland. We are also looking forward to introducing our newest Partners HBV Live, Camden Promotions and hearing from Future Ticketing.

Members and Partners of the Federation are invited to attend either online or in-person (subject to availability). This event will provide an opportunity to members to experience the studio facilities available at HBV first hand and also a valuable networking opportunity with colleagues in Sport and Partners of the Federation.

For further details email:


Annual FIS Members & Partners Pre-Breakfast Briefing 2023

Annual FIS Members & Partners Pre-Breakfast Briefing 2023

Pictured above: Matt English, CEO Special Olympics, Sarah Keane, CEO Swim Ireland and Gary Stewart, CEO Volleyball Ireland

Members of the Federation of Irish Sport gathered on 3rd October at Irish Sport HQ at the National Sports Campus to hear details of the Pre-Budget Submission made to Government on behalf of the Sports sector.

Federation CEO Mary O’Connor highlighted the four key Asks of Government with the top priority being an Increase in Core Funding for National Governing Bodies and Local Sports Partnerships. Arising from the meeting of member CEO’s and Coordinators, it became evident of the urgent need to retain staff and having sufficient personnel to implement organisation operational plans and National Sport Policy programmes to increase participation and encourage lifelong participation in sport and physical activity.

In addition to the main Ask relating to Core Funding, the other priorities for the sector include Taxation Reform under Action 3.7 of the National Sports Policy, Raising the Betting Levy from 2% to 3% and an Acceleration of Insurance Reform.

Tasked with driving Action 3.7 of the National Sports Policy the Federation worked closely with Bryan Hughes Senior Associate at A&L Goodbody and supported by economist Jim Power, to submit a report to Government which contains a number of tax expenditure reforms, which at their core seek to make sporting organisations more self-sustainable and less reliant on Government grant funding in the future.

From left, Senior Associate at A&L Goodbody Brian Hughes, Swim Ireland CEO Sarah Keane, Economist Jim Power and Badminton Ireland CEO Enda Lynch,

Speaking at the briefing A&L Goodbody Senior Associate Bryan Hughes commented: “In assisting FIS with submissions to the relevant Government Ministers, we are conscious of the budgetary and legislative constraints. However, certain amendments aligned with the Sports Action Plan are possible which would go some way to achieving the policy objectives of it and the National Sports Policy.”

A number of member CEOs voiced their support of the call for an increase in core funding:

Michelle Carpenter CEO of Rowing Ireland contributed: “As we head into a significant time for many sports which in effect is a home Olympics with Paris 2024, it’s key to invest in core funding in sport to embrace and underpin the investment in high performance sport through supporting our clubs and legacies. We have incredible ambassadors that will empower and encourage a nation and we need the tools now to maximise on this.”

Rowing Ireland CEO Michelle Carpenter and Sport for Business Founder and Editor-in-Chief Rob Hartnett 

Enda Lynch CEO of Badminton Ireland added: “Despite the incredibly valuable role sport plays in the health and wellbeing of Irish people, and the growth in participation that successive governments have targeted, the funding necessary to help people lead healthier lives through sport is struggling to keep pace in line with inflation and associated costs of doing business. Staff on one-year contracts, without pensions or health insurance etc. is not sustainable – and without the brilliant people currently working in sport, we simply won’t succeed. An increase in core funding that is reflective of NGB’s looking to do the best for their staff is critical.”

Badminton Ireland CEO Enda Lynch speaking during the Federation of Irish Sport Pre-Budget Breakfast Briefing

Speaking at the briefing Federation of Irish Sport CEO Mary O’Connor said: It is important that Government do not take sport and physical activity for granted in budget 2024 and continues its commitment to the sector by increasing core funding and recognising the significant role sport and physical activity plays throughout Ireland from grass sports to high performance.”

Federation of Irish Sport CEO Mary O’Connor speaking during the Federation of Irish Sport Pre-Budget Breakfast Briefing at Irish Sport HQ Building  

Celebrating the Volunteers in Sport Awards 2022

Celebrating the Volunteers in Sport Awards 2022

The Federation of Irish Sport celebrated the winners of the 2022 Volunteers in Sport Awards proudly supported by the National Network of 29 Local Sports Partnerships at a luncheon awards ceremony at The Crowne Plaza Hotel, Blanchardstown. The special guest speaker at the awards Thomas Byrne, Minister of State with responsibility for Sport & Physical Education, presented the recipients from each county with a custom-made medal recognising their amazing dedication to volunteering across a variety of different sports. In addressing the gathering he said “….Volunteering is the backbone of sport in this country. From the grassroots to the board room we need volunteers, we depend on volunteers.”

In addition to the 32 county award winners, the overall Outstanding Achievement Award was presented to Aislinn Nugent of Valleymount LGFA from Co. Wicklow in special recognition of her promotion of inclusivity, community spirit, health and well-being through Sport in the community for over 20 years.

The Volunteers in Sport Awards celebrate the contributions of the band of volunteers across the country who give their time to Irish sport and physical activity every year. This equates to approximately 37.3 million hours of volunteering across Ireland’s 13,000 registered sports clubs and associations and, according to Sport Ireland’s 2021 ‘Researching the Value of Sport in Ireland’ report, is worth an estimated €1.5bn to the exchequer.

Leadership in Sport and the Road Ahead

Leadership in Sport and the Road Ahead

Annual Leaders Forum with Minister Thomas Byrne TD, Minister of State with responsibility for Sport and Physical Education

Invitations have been issued to members to attend Annual Leaders Forum on Wed. 1st March for NGB CEO’s/Managers, LSP Coordinators/Managers and Senior Management in volunteer led organisations who are members of the Federation. The event will be hosted at Irish Sport HQ and available online.

Keynote Address: Minister for Sport & Physical Education, Minister Thomas Byrne TD

 Presentation on the National Sports Policy Action Plan 2021-2023A Review, Update and Planning for the road ahead from TCAGSM Officials, followed by Q&A

 Reflections on the Leadership Challenges in our Sporting Organisations, HR Specialist Una Clifford HR Nua


Federation of Irish Sport launch the 2022 Volunteers in Sport Awards

Federation of Irish Sport launch the 2022 Volunteers in Sport Awards

‘Give the gift of nominating a standout volunteer in your club’

12th December 2022:  The Federation of Irish Sport today announced the launch of the 2022 Volunteers in Sports Awards. The county awards will return to an in-person awards ceremony, recognising the army of volunteers who make sport happen in communities, in every county across the country. Nominations are now open at The awards are #DedicatedtotheDedicated.

The 2022 awards will be celebrated in the Greater Dublin Area at the beginning of March 2023. Nominations are open from Monday 12th December via the dedicated awards website. Entries will close on the 25th January 2023. Nominations received will be shortlisted and put forward for consideration by the Judging Panel. Winners are chosen on a county basis, with 32 award recipients and one overall Outstanding Volunteer Award.

Volunteers are the cornerstone of sporting activities in clubs and communities nationwide. Unpaid, they give freely of their time, energy and are dedicated to the development of their chosen sport. Over 450,000 volunteers are needed on a weekly basis to run club activities, giving on average 3½ hours per week. The estimated economic value of volunteering in sport and physical activity is worth €1.5bn. Without them sports clubs would not exist.

Commenting on the announcement Minister of State for Sport and the Gaeltacht, Jack Chambers, TD said, “It’s an honour to be part of the launch of these national awards, recognising the many volunteers who are the backbone of local sports clubs in every community across the country. They are responsible for making sure weekly training sessions take place, managing teams, organising inter-club matches, ensuring pitches, courts and clubhouses are kept operational most importantly bringing communities together through sport. Last year’s winners represented a wide variety of sports and all ages of volunteers.  I would encourage all club members to reflect on who they know in their club that has made a difference and had a positive impact in their community through their dedication to their sport.”

Mary O’Connor, CEO of the Federation of Irish Sport said, “I am delighted to launch the return of the Volunteers in Sport Industry Awards. While the awards were successfully hosted online for the last two years due to the pandemic, nothing beats the warmth and connectivity of gathering in-person to recognise the selfless work being done by volunteers behind the scenes at clubs and sporting organisations.  There is a strong sense of volunteerism in sport in Ireland. We had been on track to reach the 2027 target of 55% for social participation, club membership or attendance at a sporting event. However, Covid has impacted this and we need to encourage more participation and volunteering to get back on track to reach this target. Shining a light on our volunteers in sport is a way to recognise and remind people of the invaluable role they play in society.”

Also present at the launch the of the awards was the 2020 Co. Kildare recipient Tom Egan of Salmon Leap Canoe Club and his daughter Irish Canoeist Jenny Egan a multiple World Championship and European Medallist and Multiple World Cup Medallist and currently ranked World No. 1.

To keep up to date with all the latest announcements visit and follow @iresport on twitter and on LinkedIn