Three Year Community Sport Initiative Targets Increased Physical Activity And Volunteering


Wednesday 16 April, 2014

50,000 more young people to be trained as sports leaders, aiming to increase levels of physical activity
Aims to increase sports leaders' volunteering to one million hours a year

A nationwide partnership promoting community sport and volunteering has been launched. The partnership, consisting of Asda Community Life, Sports Leaders UK, ukactive and Spirit of 2012 Trust, aims to significantly increase the numbers of young people that take part in physical activity, promote healthier lifestyle options and increase sports leaders' volunteering hours in local communities to one million hours a year.

The three-year programme will deliver activities inspired by the athletic achievements and public spiritedness of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and is designed to make a significant difference to the lives of young people and communities across the UK.

The plans are based around the renowned leadership qualifications offered by Sports Leaders UK, the reach of Asda Community Life, the commitment to health and fitness of ukactive and the vision of the Spirit of 2012 Trust.

The activities have already kicked-off with the start of Asda Active Sports Days, powered by Sports Leaders UK. A total of 400 schools across the country will host flagship sports days, organised and run by local sports leader volunteers, with support from Asda's local Community Life Champions.

Further plans include training an extra 50,000 young people to become qualified sports leaders, who will then be able to promote active and healthy lifestyles in their communities.

The programme is one of the first to be funded by the Spirit of 2012 Trust, which was established to ensure the values, opportunities and spirit of the London 2012 Games is experienced by everyone, everywhere.

Holly Austen-Davies, Community Life Manager, Asda said:
"At Asda, we're dedicated to making our local communities better places to live and work for our colleagues and customers, which is why we are extremely excited about our new three-year partnership which aims to get even more people active in their local areas. Through volunteering and sporting activities, our aim, together with our partners, is to keep the spirit of the Olympics alive for years to come by encouraging people to lead healthier lifestyles and give back to the communities in which they live and work."

Linda Plowright, Chief Executive, Sports Leaders UK said:
"A recent report by the All-Party Commission on Physical Activity highlighted some shocking statistics about the levels of inactivity amongst children. There are some great examples of programmes aiming to combat sedentary lifestyles - this is one of them. It focuses on the enjoyment of physical activity, which is how we'll encourage behaviour change in young people."

David Stalker, Chief Executive, ukactive, said:
"We brokered this partnership because of our fundamental belief that physical activity from an early age is crucial to long term health and well-being. Asda's commitment to its communities and the reach and quality of what Sports Leaders UK do every day makes this the perfect partnership to help children and families become more active. We are thrilled that the Spirit of 2012 Trust believed in the vision of our project and have joined us as a partner."

Debbie Lye, Chief Executive, Spirit of 2012 said:
"Sport can be an incredible enabler for change. Volunteering is at the heart of Spirit's mission to encourage participation and well-being, and therefore we are hugely proud to be helping this partnership deliver such fantastic work in so many of our communities."

A photograph of the four partners holding partnership artwork against a backdrop of the Thames and London Eye is available.

Further information:

Liezel Tipper
Senior PR Lead, Sports Leaders UK
T: 01908 689221
E: pr@sportsleaders.org

or

Penny East
Head of Communications, Spirit of 2012 Trust
T: 0203 7017 7440
E: Penny.East@spiritof2012trust.org.uk

Editor's Notes

Over three years, starting 1 April 2014, the partnership aims to
Increase the amount of sports leaders from 150,000 - 200,000
Extend the reach and impact of sports leadership across the UK by growing sports leaders' volunteering hours from 640,000 to 1 million per year.

Sports Leaders UK inspires people and communities through nationally recognised leadership qualifications in sport, dance, volunteering and expedition leadership. It trains nearly 160,000 learners a year through 6,000 delivery centres across the UK. Learners from nine years old can develop essential life skills including organisation, motivation, communication and teamwork.

Asda created the Asda Active campaign to support communities around 600 of its stores to become more active through a number of initiatives. It aims to improve the health and prospects of young people and is a key pillar of Asda's Community Life corporate sociability campaign.

ukactive is the UK's leading not-for-profit health body for the physical activity sector, with 3500+ members from gyms and local authority leisure centre operators to blue chip corporates, charities, training facilities and equipment suppliers. ukactive facilitates big impact partnerships, conceives and drives breakthrough campaigns, conducts critical research and galvanises key stakeholders across the public, private and third sectors to develop and deliver projects that support and champion the physical activity agenda . The organisation's focus is led by a longstanding and uncompromising commitment to getting more people, more active, more often.

The Spirit of 2012 Trust was established to invest in happiness throughout the UK. With an endowment of £40m from the Big Lottery Fund, it will empower people to get out, be involved and feel better. It is working to ensure the spirit that radiated from the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics is felt by everyone, everywhere. By connecting events to communities across the country, it ensures investment is of local, regional and national benefit. It tackles isolation and disadvantage by supporting those projects providing opportunities in sports, the arts and volunteering.

Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of Pressat Wire, on Wednesday 16 April, 2014. For more information visit http://www.pressat.co.uk/


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