For 12 years SportInspired has been working directly with children and young people from the UK’s most deprived communities. Children and young people with this start in life are already three times as likely to experience mental health issues than their more affluent peers. Their chances of obesity are doubled by the age of 11, and unemployment prospects are high.
Covid-19 has struck millions of people who are adjusting to a new “normal”, living in lockdown, concerned for family, friends and themselves. Life is strained, even for those of us with the resource to make the changes comfortable - but for those living in the UK’s most deprived communities, their already challenging circumstances just got propelled into a much bleaker space.
Over the years SportInspired has created a sports-based development programme uniquely underpinned by the power of “fun” and “connection”. They instil the requisite behaviours, skills and beliefs to improve wellbeing and overall life chances of those who need it most.
Our current work in Tower Hamlets, Merton and Redbridge gives us the opportunity to engage directly with children and young adults who are in desperate need of additional support. SportInspired will help us to provide sports-led programmes in four primary schools in each Borough, helping those who need help become more active; a local secondary school will provide 'young leaders', who will in turn be mentored and advised by volunteers from each of our project teams.
What will start as 'festivals of sport' will then be transformed into ongoing legacy programmes delivered by local providers in the months and years to come. In a nutshell, here is what we are trying to do: