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Correct support for The Scotland Junior International Squad
[quote="andyburnett"]Thanks gentlemen, I knew I was missing something obvious Sad Although, without wishing to sidetrack the issue isn't it the organising nation(s) who have to cover these costs (included in their bids) who then recoup the money by charging exorbitant extra fees here, there and everywhere?!

Yes Andy you are right. This is why the non funded places are not value for money. Even the funded places still have to pay registration, transfer & admin fees so the 'free' places are not exactly free either.

Andy H touched on maybe one of the things that should be discussed. Adults only attend one event so are funded for that event. Juniors attend many more events to give more opportunities. Would it be better not to attend so many so the budget doesnt have to be spread so thinly? I personally think more opportunities are better but that might not be the concensus. The reason it gets spread thinly is a head of delelgation & at least one coach is sent with the squad (apart from Mureck)- any of their costs need to be met as they are already giving up their time.

I know juniors that play hockey for Scotland & their costs are high too. Its not just chess.
Thanks to Jacqui for clarification of who gives the free accomodation places.

So Scottish Juniors are supported by the home nations holding these events.

I've stated already that it is only 1 free accommodation place at each age group and if Scotland select another player at each age group then it is about £600 more expensive to that player because they have to pay accommodation and the registration fee is higher. Still, many countries believe the events are of enough substance to enter 3 or 4 at each agegroup and Russia and a few others lots more than 3 or 4. It's not uncommon to see Russia with 20 in an age category and a party of many hundreds attending.

In seeking support from Government it will be important to be positive about the events. Whatever anyone says they are World level and European level competitions and have that value to the youngsters attending in my opinion. The main reason it's not value for money in my opinion is because their talent isn't valued by their own country.
I don't think the events are outragiously expensive if you consider what is on offer. The children are after all pitching themselves against the best the other countries in the World or Europe can offer.
Scotland should be represented at these events and the children selected should not have to depend on the size of their parents bank balance as to whether or not they can accept the selection.
I wonder if the MPS and MSPS worry so much if all the meals etc they put on their expenses are value for money.
Don't really want to go there because we really need our elected representatives to get behind us and support the young talent Chess Players of Scotland.

Its is the more the merrier here and if David Deary states the facts to his elected representatives and others who believe our youngsters should be supported do likewise then there is more chance of an MP or MSP picking this up and doing something about it.
The Cause is just and I won't be embarassed to state it clearly to my MP and MSP just as soon as I have my pitch off pat and ready to clearly deliver. I expect to do this sometime in August. All the best to anyone else who will lobby their MP/MSP
Just a couple of suggestions from me:

I think it might be a good idea to have a ready-made plan in place that is available to everyone who wants to seek funding for Chess. This would include a document to send to MPs/MSPs for government funding; a document to send to businesses for sponsorship; and any other documents to any other untapped potential sources of funding. These could be added to as more ideas are brought forward etc. It seems like a hit-or-miss strategy if lots of different people go to different MPs/MSPs asking for financial assistance and all have different points about different things.

To MPs/MSPs we need to include the educational benefits of Chess: this has to be a high priority in the approach to getting funding. We need to go after funding with a positive approach, and one of the most positive things imo is the benefits to education. I'd even go as far as to say that the war of whether Chess is a sport or a game has been lost as far as the "Chess is a sport" backers go. If it wasn't then where is the money for this sport? Where - in fact - is even the discussion outwith the Chess community of whether it's a sport or not? You can't even convince the whole of the Chess community (myself included) that Chess is a sport. So let's change our strategy - Chess players should be good at that. Let's promote Chess as an educational powerhouse. Ironically this might be even more appealing to the population of potential sources of funding anyway, as one of the things people value more than sporting achievement is the education of their children. Anyone willing to do a bit of research into the exam grades of Chess-playing kids against the average national exam grades? That would be a pretty compelling set of statistics that would be hard to ignore (assuming they were as in favour of Chess as I think they will be).
I agree Andrew that we should run strongly with the educational benefits of Chess. We arn't making it up after all. You'd think they'd be interested. Something that's proven to help academic performance and they arn't interested. A totally inclusive sport also. Ticking all the right boxes but that's still not enough. Just what is wrong with them?

Also, you won't be surprised that I don't accept that the 'Chess is a Sport' debate has been lost. It's up to the Uk and yes 'The politicians again' to get with the rest of the world and stop this ignorance of Chess as the great contest it is and ofcourse it's educational benefits.

They need to get with Asia and the IOC where it is a gold medal sport in the Asian games and the IOC have recognised it as a sport.

My nose tells me there is a form of snobbery going on here. Can't quite put my finger on it but I will.
We should go along the lines of Chess is to the brain what sport is to the physique. We need to get away from the notion that Chess is somehow geeky and un-cool.
Yes, I think it is to do with this so called 'geeky' image. But not to appreciate children who can think well and show a lot of talent and nerve in a contest is prejudice in a few ways. i.e. Is Boxing really more of a sport than Chess? What kind of example should we set for youngsters?
If we just had a very small % of the money i.e spent on treating sports injuries every weekend in A & E put into Chess then we'd have adequate funding. We have a lot of talented juniors coming through and now is the time that they receive proper support because it's the lack of this funding which sees Scottish juniors not fulfilling their potential. The adult and senior teams also merit better funding and the senior team is a prime example of the 'prejudice' in my opinion. Chess players can enjoy international competition well into their retirement years where that would be possible in many sports. Chess with it's educational benefits and bona fide position as an international sport and along with it's totally inclusive nature should be an area that is beneficial to society to support.
All comments so far are helpful and as Andrew mentioned I (or someone better qualified to do so if they wish) will try to put something together which can be used as an approach for funding to government and corporate sponsorship.
You couldn't have picked a much worse analogy than boxing there Angus! Boxing IS more of a sport than chess could ever be - and it has always been seen as an excellent way to promote self-discipline, fitness and a focussed environment to channel the aggression and frustration that many youngsters have. (Admittedly some of the high-profile examples aren't great - Tyson/the Haye-Chisora nonsense recently - but those are the exception really). Chess and boxing have many positive factors in common (apart from getting hit in the face of course!)

I am struggling to recall the exact details,but I'm sure there was some controversy a few years back when a leading English GM slagged off bowls during a TV discussion of the merits of chess being seen as a sport. This led to a bit of a backlash - a minor one but it's still not something we need!

Anyway, just a wee reminder to be careful with the words and examples we use =)
andyburnett Wrote:Haye-Chisora nonsense recently

It was an excellent KO by Haye though... did you see the speed and precision of his punching! =) My personal view is that they somewhat redeemed themselves with this fight. I like boxing.

Chess is like a phsychological/intellectual version of boxing. It's 1v1; it's (essentially) a fight; you don't know what your opponent is going to try next; and you're always striving to make that KO punch that'll end the bout.
Angus, I deleted your duplicate post. Hope it's okay. A
I have to admit I don't really understand the mentality in this thread... i.e the Govt. does not appreciate chess so gives a lower priority to it. A small amount of analysis would show that the annual grant/funding given to Chess Scotland over the past few years is comparatively similar (in terms of a member ratio) to the support provided to other organisations - for example Tennis Scotland.

The problem surely lies with the lack of attempt to obtain corporate sponsorship. There are plenty of international companies in Scotland who have entire departments dedicated to sponsorship.

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