Sport England’s New Strategy: What does it mean in terms of their funding?

As most people will be aware Sport England launch their new Strategy on Thursday called ‘Towards an Active Nation.’ What many clubs and organisations across the Country will have been asking themselves is; What does it mean in terms of their funding? Who will get this? What funding streams will there be? and What’s Changed?

Although the detail to the above is still unclear, from the strategy we do know that Sport England has simplified their approach to funding, reducing the number of investment programmes from more than 30 down to seven. They will also be introducing, new, more straightforward, application forms to help smaller organisations access funding.

With regards to their seven investment programme that will operate from 2016-2021 they will be as follows;

  • Tackling inactivity – to help the 28 per cent of people in England who don’t do any sport or physical activity
  • Children and young people – to work with children from the age of 5 to increase children’s basic competence and enjoyment
  • Volunteering – focusing on the motivations and needs of the volunteers so that volunteering in sport attracts more people from a wider range of backgrounds
  • Taking sport and activity into the mass market – focusing on the sports and activities that have mass appeal and can get large numbers of people active
  • Supporting sport’s core markets (including talented athletes) – supporting those who already have a strong affinity for sport in a more efficient and sustainable way
  • Local delivery – exploring new ways of working locally by investing in up to 10 specific areas to pilot new, more joined up approaches to getting people active
  • Creating welcoming sports facilities – with a new Community Asset Fund, and continuing its successful Strategic Facilities Fund, prioritising multi-sport facilities and, wherever possible, co-locating them with other local services.

What we also know is that they will;

  • Ensure their investment benefits under-represented groups, prioritising

    demographic groups who are currently under-represented in terms of their engagement with sport and physical activity. This includes many different groups including women, older people, disabled people and people from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

  • Use the behaviour change model to help guide our investment decisions. They  will focus on three behavioural challenges: tackling inactivity; creating regular activity habits and helping those with a resilient habit stay that way.
  • Build on the lessons learned in their Inspired Facilities programme to simplify all of their competitive funding processes over the life of this strategy, starting with the new Community Asset Fund which will replace our Small Grants programme.
  • Projectively investment to be spent as follows: 29% Core Market, 17% Children and Young People, 16% Facilities, 16% Local Pilots, 13% Inactivity, 6% Mass Markets and 3% Volunteering
  • Create a new, dedicated fund of £120 million to tackle inactivity over the next four years, building on the insight Sport England has gained from their Get Healthy Get Active pilots.
  • Ensure that at least 25 per cent (£265 million) of their total investment over the next four years directly benefits inactive people, including a proportion of their funding for local delivery, children and young people, and facilities.
  • Make a major new investment of £40 million into projects which offer new opportunities for families with children to get active and play sport together.
  • Help to ensure there is a good sports and activity offer before and after the school day through supporting satellite clubs and exploring the new Government investment into extending the school day and breakfast clubs.
  • Create a new strategy for volunteering in sport and physical activity in England by November 2016, making available up to £30 million over the next four years to support the implementation of this strategy.
  • Provide insight, advice and funding to those who deliver to regular players, focusing on customer needs and delivering excellent experiences.
  • Invest approximately 29 per cent of their available budget to support sport’s core market, which will include their work with talent.
  • Invest in talent pathways and performance foundation programmes to give athletes a positive experience and to allow the best athletes to achieve international success.
  • Invest at least £130 million over the next four years in 10 places in England to develop and implement local strategies for physical activity and sport. These places will be a mix of urban and rural areas.
  • Continue to support local delivery throughout England, for example through their Strategic Facilities Fund and the Community Asset Fund
  • Continue to invest in all types of facilities, with a strong presumption in favour of multi-sport for their major strategic investments. They will also create a new Community Asset Fund to support local infrastructure. They will therefore replace Inspired Facilities with a new community asset fund to include helping communities take ownership of local assets from local authorities or elsewhere. The new fund will allow applicants to apply for a revenue as well as a capital grant in a single application. Their investment for facilities will therefore concentrate on two areas:
  1. A strategic capital programme – for large, usually multi-sport facilities
  2. Community Asset Fund – offering grants of between £10,000 – £150,000 to support and improve existing local infrastructure
  • Invest £18 million each year over the next four years in accordance with the football facility investment strategy being developed by Sport England, the Football Association, the Premier League and the Football Foundation. This will include the Parklife project which will create football hubs in more than 20 major cities across the country.
  • Launch a new fund of up to £1 million to support prospective hosts in developing their bids to bring major events to England.
  • Invest a further £2 million through the Major Events Engagement Fund to maximise the wider impact of events brought to England.

To view Sport England’s new strategy click here; sport-england-towards-an-active-nation

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