Young people in the West of England urged to get out and give sport a go in Olympic legacy push
Thousands of teenagers and young adults across the West of England are to benefit from a new sports programme that aims to fulfil the legacy promise made by Seb Coe in Singapore in 2005 to ‘inspire young people to choose sport’.
Sportivate will give 14- to 25-year-olds the chance to receive six to eight weeks of coaching in a sport of their choice. Launched by Sport England and Wesport today, the £32 million National Lottery-funded project will help those who aren’t currently playing sport in their own time to get out and give sport a go.
As part of the Places People Play mass participation legacy programme, Sportivate will see 300,000 teenagers and young adults across England completing sports courses over four years.
Thanks to the Lottery investment in Wesport, at least 7000 local peoplewill be able to take part in activities such as the cricket project at Harry Crook Youth Centre in Bristol which is starting today.This is one of five projects being delivered by Gloucestershire Cricket Board (GCB) at different youth clubs across the city. These projects are aiming to engage with a new group of young people, who have not yet had the chance to experience cricket. The delivery will use cricket as a tool to develop young people in both the game but also as leaders. Steve Silk, Cricket Development Manager at the GCB explained that:
“Cricket should be available to all but this is not always the case, these projects will hopefully provide the opportunities to some who have not had them before.”
Sport England’s Chief Executive, Jennie Price, said:
“Lots of young people think sport isn’t for them. I would like them to have the chance to discover whether there is a sport they really enjoy, so this programme is all about choice. Everyone who takes part will receive high quality coaching – giving them the confidence and skills which will make them want to keep playing in the future.”
Today’s announcement was welcomed by the Minister for Sport and the Olympics, Hugh Robertson MP, and Commonwealth Games medalist, Zoë Smith.
"This £32 million Lottery programme launched by Sport England will give hundreds of thousands of teenagers and young adults across the country the opportunity to try out and get coached in the sport of their choice. I’m sure these same young people will also be inspired when the world’s greatest athletes compete here at next summer’s Olympic and Paralympic Games and will then want to stay involved in sport for many years to come.”
Zoë Smith became the youngest ever weightlifting Commonwealth medalist when she won bronze at the 2010 Delhi Games at the age of 16. Zoë, who now has her sights set on competing at London 2012, said:
“Getting the chance to get out and try a new sport is fantastic. I didn’t take up my sport until I was 12, so it just shows if you’re up for some fun and trying something new, you can find a sport you really want to stick with.”
Wesport will work with local providers and sports clubs to help 14- to 25-year-olds in the West of Englandto continue playing sport long after they have completed the course.
To help inspire and motivate the participants, our Sporting Champions - a team of current and retired elite athletes - will visit Sportivate sessions to share their experiences and enthusiasm for sport.
As an additional incentive, teenagers and young adults who stick with sport will have the chance to enter a ballot for free London 2012 tickets. Sport England has hundreds of Olympic and Paralympic tickets available for Sportivate participants via the London 2012 Ticketshare initiative.
In order to be eligible for London 2012 Ticketshare, participants will need to complete the sports course, missing no more than one session, and then continue to participate in sport for at least three months.
Sportivate is an inclusive programme that will create opportunities for disabled and non-disabled participants.
Notes to Editors
Sport England will invest £8 million of National Lottery funding per year over the next four years into Sportivate.
Sport England is focused on the delivery of a mass participation legacy from the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. We invest National Lottery and Exchequer funding in organisations and projects that will grow and sustain participation in grassroots sport and create opportunities for people to excel at their chosen sport.
Sporting Championsis a Sport England initiative bringing world-class athletes face-to-face with young people and young adults to inspire and motivate them. For more information, please visit the Sporting Champions website.
West of England Sport Trust (Wesport)
Wesport works to inspire people, empower organisations and create opportunities through sport and physcial activity. Wesport is a Company Limited by Guarantee and registered charity and is based at the University of the West of England.
Wesport also fulfils the role of a County Sport Partnership for the West of England (formerly County of Avon). For more information about County Sport Partnerships please Click Here.
For more information about Sportivate in the West of England contact Sarah Mcleod on email@example.com 0117 3286265
London 2012 Ticketshare
London 2012 Ticketshare is an exciting initiative that will allow many individuals who would not normally have access to the Olympic and Paralympic Games the chance to attend. Tickets are funded through a levy on London 2012 Prestige Ticketing hospitality packages.