On Target
April 30, 2009
When PR means Poor Relations

An increasing level of contempt, disdain, disrespect and utter disregard for the sporting public of St. Vincent and the Grenadines is being delivered by some of the national sporting associations here.

It seems that some persons entrusted with leadership do not really care about their relationship with the public and the need to get them in the know.{{more}}

In recent times, the list of offenders has been growing.

Team Athletics SVG, once a beacon in the field of the prompt dissemination of information, has lately been decked out in a robe of lethargy and callousness.

That organisation held two meets in recent times, the Relay Classics and the Juvenile Championships, but it seems as if it is only the organizers who seem to have knowledge of who won the events, and who were the outstanding performers.

It was a shameful that at the two meets in question there were no Public Address Systems in place, except the straining of the vocal chords of one of the organizers. A sad occurrence, when better surely was done in the past, and can be done.

Of late, too, a norm has been lateness of notices for TASVG events. Better late than never, but one should be never late.

Team Athletics SVG is following the example set by the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Cricket Association, which a few weeks ago sent a team to the West Indies Women’s Under-19 Competition in St. Lucia.

Much was heard of the team’s departure, the handing over and so on, but nothing has been heard of the team’s performance. Yes, we are aware that Jamaica eventually triumphed, but what did the local lasses do?

Did they win a match? Who were the outstanding performers, if any?

It just underscores what I had earlier suggested that the outing was merely a joy ride.

Is not the management answerable to the Executive of the SVGCA, and the Executive answerable to the sporting public, and by extension the general public, to whom at times they go looking for support of their events?

No one can depend on the lame West Indies Cricket Board’s website Windiescricket.com, which is operating on borrowed time, which sometimes posts information long after the event has passed, or not at all.

So the onus was on the management of the team to have the scores sent back to base. And, in an age when technology is available at the push of a button or the turn of a switch or the punch of a few digits, getting the information to home base seemed to be a mountain for those who went just across the seas.

Similarly, the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tennis Association has also gone on an extended slumber in respect of public relations.

No longer are you bombarded with the in your face approach as to the happenings of the once thought of near excellent Tennis body. Dumb in the main, except for a little tinkling here and there whenever a Junior Championship is nearing.

The sayings that sometimes one leaves the bone and goes after the shadow and new brooms sweep clean, but the old ones find the corners are really truisms. But it is those same associations which in their own undoing expect persons to turn around and pamper them after they have messed up.

Sadly, at each election of officers, there is always a post announced called Public Relations Officer and with a corresponding name attached to that position.

These offenders have failed to emulate the Bequia Basketball Association, the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Squash Association, and to some extent the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Basketball Federation, which have all learnt the art of Public Relations.

All associations are required to beef up their public relations arm and learn the art of courtship of those in the media. In addition, representative national teams which leave this state should ensure that someone in the management team is responsible for sending reports to the respective media houses, or have a point person here to get the scores and results out. This should not be a problem, as at times, the teams are usually manned by sufficient personnel to make the PR task part of their reason for travelling.

This is mandatory, as often what comes out is the host country’s performance and a home town perspective of the competition, leaving us at a loss as to the efforts of our own.

So those who are conscious of this short coming, please fix it.

But what still remains a bother to many is that “Mound” at the Sion Hill Playing Field.

Email: kingroache@yahoo.com