Local sport stars back Unsung Hero

NO FEE''Press Eye Ltd''29th October 2009''Photograph BY Russell Pritchard / Presseye.com''Bobbie Platt was Alan Campbell's first volunteer coach, and he was also Richard Archibald's first coach, and Alan spoke passionately of the massiveimpact Bobbie had, and continued to have, on his success. 'Volunteer Champion: Olympic rower Alan Campbell puts volunteering in the lead with the launch of Creating Volunteering Champions, a programme of volunteer management training for sport, delivered by the Volunteer Development Agency. The programme has been granted the Inspire Mark by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, which recognises innovative and exceptional projects that are genuinely inspired by the Games. Visit: www.volunteering-ni.org
NO FEE''Press Eye Ltd''29th October 2009''Photograph BY Russell Pritchard / Presseye.com''Bobbie Platt was Alan Campbell's first volunteer coach, and he was also Richard Archibald's first coach, and Alan spoke passionately of the massiveimpact Bobbie had, and continued to have, on his success. 'Volunteer Champion: Olympic rower Alan Campbell puts volunteering in the lead with the launch of Creating Volunteering Champions, a programme of volunteer management training for sport, delivered by the Volunteer Development Agency. The programme has been granted the Inspire Mark by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games, which recognises innovative and exceptional projects that are genuinely inspired by the Games. Visit: www.volunteering-ni.org
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Which Unsung Hero in Northern deserves recognition?

Amid the stunning year of sport so far, the BBC has launched the BBC Sports Personality Unsung Hero Award, to celebrate people working behind the scenes to make sport accessible to all.

Olympic bronze medallist Alan Campbell has launched this year’s search, paying tribute to Bobby Platt, his rowing coach at Coleraine Inst and the recipient of the award in 2009.

“One such hero, unsung for many years but now recognised through the BBC Unsung Hero award in 2009 and the New Year Honours list is Bobby Platt MBE,” said Alan.

“He was my first rowing coach at school. As a volunteer he instilled a passion and a belief in me for the sport of rowing which has grown over the last 16 years.”

Sean McGoldrick, a dedicated servant of Eoghan Rua GAA Club in Coleraine, won the BBC Northern Ireland Sports Unsung Hero award for 2011.

“I have since had the opportunity to pursue my sport to the highest level surpassing any expectations I had when I first started out,” said Sean.

“I have been afforded the luxury to be selfish and live my dream though the dedication, help and selfless acts of not just Bobby but all the unsung heroes.

“It is now time for me and all of us to recognise the people that make a difference.”

The BBC’s Unsung Hero awards have run annually since 2003. They recognise special people who dedicate their lives to promoting sport in their community, taking no reward from it other than the pleasure of helping others to participate and enjoy their sport.

The Northern Ireland Unsung Hero winner will be chosen by an expert panel and announced in early December.

He or she will then compete against the winners from all 12 BBC English Regions plus Scotland and Wales for the overall winner who will be announced on the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year programme in December, live on BBC ONE.

The winner of the BBC Northern Ireland Unsung Hero Award 2011 was Sean McGoldrick of Coleraine GAA club Eoghan Rua.

The Belfast native was instrumental in transforming the fortunes of Eoghan Rua, dedicating 25 years of his life, all in a voluntary capacity, to his beloved club.

So if you know someone like Bobby Platt or Sean McGoldrick, whose unselfish and hard-working commitment to sport in their communities deserves recognition log on to the BBC Sport website.

Nomination forms must be returned by by 11.59pm on Monday 29 October.