The phenomenon that is the Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camp continues with records again being set in 2017.
Leinster continues to show a strong area of growth with every one of our 12 counties showing an increase. Before the summer was out and all camps had been staged, at the time of going to print the numbers for Leinster were recording an increase of 27 per cent on 2016 with 36,176 signed up on line.
This does not take into account walk ups at all of these camps and when the summer is over, the final figures for Leinster GAA Cúl Camp participation will be even higher again. Not surprisingly given the population base, the biggest increases were recorded across Dublin. There were 5,838 children in Dublin who attended a camp by the start of August.
But elsewhere in Leinster there are other significant numbers to note. Westmeath GAA recorded the biggest increase outside of the Capital – the Lake County soaring by 42 per cent in participation. Laois GAA had a great summer of camps with the O’Moore County seeing an increase of 41 per cent. Carlow GAA numbers, no doubt inspired by the heroics of the county footballers, are up by 31 per cent.
Both Meath and Wicklow are celebrating 30 per cent increases. More than 4,000 children in both Wexford and Kildare have taken part in Cúl Camps this summer. Offaly is just short of the 3,000 mark and enjoying a 21 per cent increase. Figures in Louth are up 22 per cent and in Kilkenny there were 2,106 children who had attended a GAA Cúl Camp by the start of August.
When you factor in home grown camps run by GAA Clubs themselves outside of this, it represents a really good news story. All across the country Gaelic Games have never been stronger, never been more popular with participation rates never higher.
The Kellogg’s GAA Cúl Camp model caters for children aged between six and 13 and has grown year on year with attractive and easily identifiable kit given out to the participating kids clearly visible in villages, towns and cities everywhere. Charlie Harrison, the GAA’s National Cúl Camps coordinator says: “it is a positive story with participation increase in every county in Leinster and shows that the hard work that games personnel and club members are putting in is paying off.”