Audrey_CooperNovember 23 - The only Scot ever to play volleyball at the Olympics has been given a senior coaching management position at Volleyball England.

Audrey Cooper, the current GB Women's coach, will help develop young talent as the new Community Development Coaches (CDC) network manager.

Cooper will continue to oversee the GB Women's programme in addition to her new role.

Volleyball England is currently working to raise awareness and participation levels of volleyball while responding to a growing interest in the sport as London 2012 approaches.

Cooper will be instrumental in driving the CDC programme forwards as Volleyball England and other National Governing Bodies deal with the loss of the school sport network and finding new partners and ways of working since recent changes.

"I have recently been working with top level players but reaching out at a grassroots level and getting young people hooked on volleyball is essential to the future of the sport, not to mention the health of the nation," said Cooper.

"I'm excited to start working in my new role to drive an increase in participation across the country."

The CDC programme was formed in November 2009 with 16 dynamic, motivated and ambitious coaches working hard towards the target of getting 5,000 more young people regularly playing volleyball at Volley 123-accredited clubs around the country by 2013.

So far, the programme is on track to achieve this with nearly 2,500 young people playing volleyball.

Cooper's role will be to oversee the diverse CDC activities: they train players, encourage potential event organisers and volunteers, ensure talented young players receive quality coaching and opportunities to maximise their potential, and put in place clear, structured pathways.

The CDCs work in a variety of settings including schools, clubs and community venues to develop sustainable programmes within each region.

Lisa Wainwright, chief executive officer of Volleyball England, said: "I am thrilled that Audrey is on board – with her background she is bound to make a real impact on our efforts to get more people involved in volleyball.

"The CDC programme aims to show people that volleyball is a great sport for men and women of all ages to enjoy in the park, beach or at a leisure centre."