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GAA Healthy Club Project

Welcome to the 'GAA Healthy Club Project' homepage

The health and well-being of members has been firmly placed at the heart of GAA clubs with the launch of phase one of the new innovative GAA Healthy Club Project.

The GAA Healthy Club Project is a collaborative partnership between the GAA and the health sector which aims to assist GAA clubs in responding to the wide and varied health needs of their members, while extending the positive influences out to the wider community. Uachtarán CLG, Liam Ó Néill, and Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health, Dr Tony Holohan, jointly launched the project on the 11th of March 2013, reflecting its collaborative nature between the GAA and the HSE.

Pictured at the launch is Uachtarán CLG Liam Ó Néill and Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health Dr Tony Holohan with four club representatives, one from each province.

GAA clubs all over the world already provide great health benefits for their players, members and communities alike. Yet there exists continuous demand from clubs for guidance in many areas relating to health promotion including:

• Healthy eating and diet
• Drug and alcohol awareness
• Mental well-being and resilience development
• Suicide prevention and response
• Promotion of health and well-being through physical activity
• Activities for older and non-playing members

“The GAA Healthy Club Project aims to highlight and re-enforce the great work already being done by clubs while assisting them in identifying and responding to the most important health issues amongst their membership and in their communities,” Liam O’Neill said at the launch.

“This collaboration is an extension of the long-standing partnership between the health sector and the GAA through the association’s ASAP (Alcohol and Substance Abuse Prevention) programme and we hope this project will further assist clubs and their communities to respond to their health needs in a holistic way at grass roots level,” added Dr Tony Holohan.

A call for expressions of interest was issued to all GAA clubs across the 32 counties last December and 18 clubs out of 60 applicants were selected to participate in phase one of the project which will run for 24 months. It is being independently evaluated throughout Phase one with relevant findings presented after this stage’s conclusion. Within the 18 clubs selected, two mentoring clubs were selected due to the high quality of their expression of interest forms and were identified as useful templates for the other 16 clubs as regards what can be practically achieved at club level. Four clubs from each province were selected, with limitation to one club per county.

The participating clubs are as follows:

Mentoring Clubs
St. Finbarr's (Cork)
 St. Peter's (Down)


Leinster Munster
Annacurra club (Wicklow) Beaufort   (Kerry)
Thomas Davis (Dublin) Nenagh Eire Óg (Tipperary)
St. Colmcilles (Meath)  Mungret St.Pauls (Limerick)

St. John's Volunteers (wexford)

Midleton (Cork)
Connacht Ulster
Liam Mellows Hurling Club (Galway) St Mary’s Rasharkin (Antrim)
Ballinamore Sean O’ Heslin (Leitrim) St. John’s Drummaquoile (Down)
Eastern Harps (Sligo) Culloville Blues (Armagh)
Oran (Roscommon) Castleblayney Faughs (Monaghan)


Pictured at the launch is Uachtarán CLG Liam Ó Néill and Chief Medical Officer at the Department of Health Dr Tony Holohan with a representative from each club involved in phase one of the Healthy Club Project.

The GAA Healthy Club Project is the first of its kind in the sporting context and is being directed at national level by a Croke Park Project Team and Steering Committee featuring representatives from the GAA, HSE, National Office of Suicide Prevention, the third level education sector (DCU and Carlow IT) and the Irish Sports Council. Four Operational Groups will assist in its roll-out at provincial level, tapping into support and expertise at GAA Provincial Council level, Local Sports Partnerships, and regional Health Promotion units, plus their northern counterparts.

We are currently at the initial stage of phase one which involves all clubs completing a needs assessment of the perceived health needs of their members’ and wider community. This involves clubs distributing a questionnaire to their members and wider community to identify priority areas and produce an action plan to address these needs. It is intended that all participating clubs will be in accordance with the ten GAA Healthy Club criteria developed as part of the project’s framework. Clubs will also be encouraged to reach out to their wider membership and communities in order to tap into some of the exceptional skills people have in this area.

If you feel you have something to contribute to a participating club in your area, or should you wish to contact the National Croke Park Project Team regarding the Healthy Club Project please do so through email or directly:

Colin Regan - GAA Community & Health Manager

Email:    |    Phone: 01 8658674

Emmet Haughian – GAA Health and Wellbeing Coordinator

Email:     |    Phone: 01 8192393

Stacey Cannon – GAA Health and Wellbeing Coordinator

Email:    |    Phone: 01 8192387

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