Activities Officer

RUSU Activities Officer 2019/20 Daisy o'Connor

Activities Officer
Daisy o'Connor

Hi, I’m Daisy O’Connor, and I’m your Activities Officer for this year! I look after all the sports, societies, media, and volunteering opportunities we have at RUSU, and I also help to maintain a good relationship with the local community. I’m from Birmingham, and I just graduated from Reading with a degree in BA Psychology and Philosophy. I loved my course, but the highlights of my time at Uni came from the activities I took up outside of my studies- I played cricket for the men’s team for two years before starting a really successful women’s team in my final year. Clubs at RUSU are for everyone, so I hope to see you soon!

Check out my manifesto

Activities Officer Progress Tracker

In progress

The Buddy Scheme is for anyone that wants to join in with sport this year! If someone is worried about going on their own, worried about finding their way to the session, or just want a mate to make it more fun, they can fill in a form and be paired with someone else who signs up. The goal is to widen participation in sport, particularly amongst students who don’t necessarily feel like the typical sportsperson.

09/19 The buddy scheme is live! In the first two days of it being open we’ve had over 30 responses, so hopefully they’ll keep coming in!
08/19 Working with our web developer to make a form and figure out how we can collate everyone’s responses once they’ve filled it in. The artwork request is in- I want to make it as clear as possible without it being too cheesy.
In progress

I want to reduce food waste on campus by redistributing unwanted to food to those who need it in the Reading community. As well as improving community relations and reducing food poverty, this would also make campus more sustainable.

09/19 University event catering have agreed to use Olio! RUSU’s own catering and our café will also be giving Olio a go. I’ve booked a stall in the volunteering fayre to tell students about Olio and how to use it.
08/19 Investigating different options of schemes which reduce food waste. I have decided on Olio- an app where individuals or businesses can upload unwanted food, and people in the community can collect it for free. I am working with the University community team on how to encourage individuals to use the app in the community.
07/19 Met people from Wycliffe church about the food bank they run using food waste from the campus co-op. Discussed how I can support them moving forward.
In progress

Clubs often struggle to cope with an unexpected increase in membership due to facility space, coach availability, and funding. I want to help clubs get additional funding throughout the year so that they can continue to provide the best opportunities to their members.

09/19 We have agreed that the financial rewards awarded for completing the Knights Accreditations Scheme last year will continue for 19/10! There is money set aside to reward club who complete this, which is a great way for expanding clubs to get some extra funds. I am also looking at the financial training and information that clubs are given to make sure they understand everything that they need to know.
08/19 Discussing where such funding would come from- I am discovering that there are some areas of funding available to clubs which they are either unaware of, or are not able to utilise to their full potential.
In progress

I want to reduce homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia in University sport. I believe that most of these problems come from people’s misconceptions about LGBTQ+ individuals, and so my campaign will focus on education and discussion.

09/19 Created a campaign brief which details my goals and plans for the campaign.
In progress

Both RUSU and the University want to widen participation in sport, and allow every student to reap the physical and mental health benefits of exercise. However, this is not possible whilst we have so little training space on campus- we are at capacity. The University are on board to build a 3G pitch on campus, complete with cricket nets and a spectator stand - this will allow sports clubs to grow to ensure that we meet our goal of having 50% of students involved in sport by 2026.

09/19 The project will go on the council website in Autumn term- I am working with the University to figure out how to drum up support from the local community so the council gives us planning permission to start the build!!
09/19 The building of a 3G pitch has been a really long process taking place over a few years now - to see my full update of what’s happened so far and the evidence that the 3G pitch is needed, take a look at my report on the 3G Pitch.

Continued 18/19 projects

RUSU Activities Officer 2018 support sport policy

Promotion of sport events across campus with match times and location using social media, website and digital screens. This will encourage more wins for the Reading teams as crowd support is a great motivator! Additionally, it allows Reading students to feel a part of the BUCs Wednesday and the Knights identity without having to participate in the sport itself. This initiative achieves the aims through sports calendars, highlight reels and social media posts. The Good Lad Initiative workshops also sit under support sport as they promote better behaviour amongst are clubs which in turn will reduce negative stereotypes associated with sports and encourage a more cohesive campus between all students.

09/19 Expanded the Good Lad initiative to 28 sessions! In the process of booking these sessions in across the year. We are also running committee welcome chats for the first time this year, where we can talk about socials and discuss the year ahead over pizza!
06/19 In talks with Good Lad Initiative about their rebrand, and how we’re going to develop these workshops at RUSU after fantastic feedback from last year.
11/18 Arranged a meeting with Director of Sport to see if Sports Calendars can go up in Sports Park!
10/18 Sports calendars up on RUSU digital boards. Logistics of sports highlights reel completed with filming taken from matches every Wednesday to be edited and ready for the following Wednesday, shown from 2-6pm in Mojos in conjunction with the Match Day Mojos initiative. Additionally, RUSU and the University arranged Good Lad Initiative workshops for sports club committees as a trial run with potential to make these widespread next year, dependant on feedback. We had good feedback.
09/18 Liaise with Welfare and Diversity officer regarding Good Lad Initiative, what the content would be and how the workshops would run. Booked in workshop sessions with 9 sports committees, taking in consideration match and training times!
08/18 Liaised with RUSU Marketing and Venue about using the digital boards around RUSU with weekly updates of home match times and locations.
07/18 Liaised with the Student Activities department on what sources would be best to communicate match times and dates to the students.
RUSU Activities Officer 2018 match day Mojos policy

Inspired by the cultural norm around Rugby where both oppositions and officials socialise after their sport over food and drink in a club house. Teams should get a chance to relax and enjoy celebrating their match results whilst refuelling. Additionally, removing the competitive side after the match and socialising with the opposition develops our relations with neighbouring universities. To encourage this, I want to offer a food and drink deal at Mojos on Wednesday afternoons.

10/18 Artwork confirmed, social media advertised and emails sent out to sports club. Deal launched!
09/18 Initial meeting with venue to discuss feasibility and food deals. Burger, chips and drinks confirmed for £5. Artwork request sent.
RUSU Activities Officer 2018 community campaign policy

RUSU aims to work with the UoR and local community to improve relations and the overall reputation of students. Through this campaign it will promote better cohesion between the local community and students resulting in a friendlier and safer neighbourhood. Working in conjunction with Gemma King (Welfare Officer).

09/19 We have chosen Olio as our route to reduce food waste- we are discussing how best to get the community involved.
06/19 Discussing with Sarah Gardner how this project can be extended to achieve my manifesto idea to reduce food waste. Looking into charities and/or apps that can redistribute food to those in need in the community.
11/18 With Welfare officer we are completing the website information that is part of the campaigning, providing students 10 points to follow as a neighbour.
10/18 Hello Neighbour packs completed and collected by student staff to post out.
09/18 Artwork request sent and completed. Postcards printed. Materials delivered to RUSU to be packed (packs include: Hello Neighbour envelope, Information postcard in a friendly tone to relay helpful information to students living in private accommodation, a postcard that encourages to contact their neighbours by filling it in a posting it through their door, and finally a tea bag to share a cup of tea with the neighbour). Event decided but due to venue hire and logistics has been postponed.
08/18 Currently brainstorming ideas and names for the campaign, in addition to when in the year a campaign could be launched. -Looking into possible events to support this campaign.
07/18 Initial meeting with Sarah Gardner, (UoR Community Relations Officer) to discuss potential plans for the year.
In progress

The Knights Accreditation Scheme was set up last year however was not majorly advertised and pushed towards our clubs as it was midway through the academic year. This scheme is to encourage sports to move their clubs in the right direction to grow sustainably and improve their society, with Bronze level as the minimum requirement for clubs to affiliate with RUSU.

09/19 The clubs who got awards last year have been send their prizes- £100 for each club that got silver, and £300 for Kendo who got gold!
08/19 Digital medals have been uploaded to the sports webpages, so that new and prospective students can browse the website and see the calibre of the club they want to join.
12/18 Made a public spreadsheet for clubs to keep track of which criteria they’ve completed, and send in evidence as they go along.
10/18 Advertised the scheme to sports clubs, and explained the benefits of completing it.
08/18 Restructured and edited the criteria and what needs to be achieved for each level; Bronze, Silver and Gold. Submitted an artwork request where the sports club’s achievement level is more prevalent for others to see on the RUSU website.