The Football League Trust is backing Sport England’s new Strategy for the future of sport that was released this week.
As well as continuing to support people who already play sport, there will be a much greater emphasis on groups who are typically much less active such as women, disabled people and those from lower-socio-economic backgrounds.
Mike Evans, Director of Operations at the Football League Trust, comments, “The new strategy places a much stronger emphasis on the benefits that taking part in sport can bring, such as improving both physical and mental health, social cohesion and reducing crime. This is an approach that 72 Football League Community Trusts in our network have been taking with considerable success for a numerous years. For example our Female Football Development programme, is very much about getting inactive women and girls from all backgrounds involved in sport with the focus firmly on fun and fitness.”
Sport England will spend £250 million to combat inactivity as part of five-year strategy which also include dedicated funding to get children and young people active from the age of five, Mike continues. “Because football clubs are in the heart of their communities they are very effective at getting young people active. Our Trusts an incredible amount of work in schools already with programmes such as Kinder+Sport Move and Learn are getting children active as well as teaching them the benefits of healthy eating.”
More about the strategy
The strategy will help deliver against the six health, social and economic outcomes set out in the Government’s Sporting Future strategy.
Key features of the new strategy are:
- Dedicated funding to get children and young people active from the age of five, including a new fund for family based activities and offering training to at least two teachers in every secondary school in England to help them better meet the needs of all children, irrespective of their level of sporting ability
- Working with the sport sector to put customers at the heart of everything they do, and using the principles of behaviour change to inform their work
- Piloting new ways of working locally by investing in up to 10 places in England – a mix of urban and rural areas
- Investing up to £30m in a new volunteering strategy, enabling more people to get the benefits of volunteering and attracting a new, more diverse range of volunteers
- Helping sport keep pace with the digital expectations of customers – making it as easy to book a badminton court as a hotel room
- Working closely with governing bodies of sport and others who support people who already play regularly, to help them become more efficient, sustainable and diversify their sources of funding.
Read the new strategy Towards an Active Nation.