We invest in the 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. Our structure reflects this focus.” (Sport England)
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Sport England’s job is to improve sports participation on all levels, especially grassroots. They work in partnership with Youth Sport Trust which focuses on PE in schools and with UK Sport who focus on elite success.
“Sport England is a government agency responsible for building for foundations of sporting success, by creating a world-leading community sport system of clubs, coaches, facilities and volunteers.” (Sport England)
The mission of Sport England is to create a vibrant sporting culture working in partnership with various National Governing Bodies, Higher and further education sector and their national partners as well as local government and community organisations. The aims and targets are set around three areas, they are ‘grow, sustain and excel’. The aim of growing is to get ‘one million people taking part in more sport’ and ‘more children and young people taking part in 5 hours of PE and sport a week’. This counts as 15% of the investment and sustain counts as 60% of the investment. The aim of sustaining is to have ‘more people satisfied with their sporting experience’ and to have ‘25% fewer16-18 year olds dropping out of at least nine sports- badminton, basketball, football, hockey, gymnastics, netball, rugby league, rugby union and tennis.’ The final area is excel and this counts as 25% of the investment, and the aim is to ‘improve talent development in at least 25 sports’
The staffing structure includes the ‘main board’ which is responsible for setting direction, providing an extra level of governance and advice. There is also the ‘executive team’ which is responsible for the ‘day to day’ running of the business. Sport England work in 11 offices over England, one is the central office in London, nine other local offices and one shared service centre in Loughborough that deals with responses to funding applications and queries. There is a team executive director, they are responsible for the club and community part of the governments 5 hour sport offer for children and young people, including leading a number of programmes including leadership and volunteering. The next member of staff is the executive director for commercial, their role is to find and work with the commercial partners to generate £50 million for community sport, and the team works innovatively to ensure that the partners derive real benefits from their investments. The next member of staff is the communications and public affairs executive director, they are responsible for helping the partners and the public understand what they do as an organisation. Another job role is the communities executive manager, their role is to help the national governing bodies deliver their plans at a local level; they do this by working with local partnerships. The next job role is the facilities and planning executive director, their role is to help create, support and maintain the buildings, facilities and spaces needed to play sport. The next job role is the finance and corporate services; the directorate is responsible for all the back office functions, including finance, ICT and legal services. There are also NGB and sport executive directors; their role is to help sport’s national governing bodies achieve their participation, satisfaction and talent development targets. The final job role is the research and strategy executive director, they provide evidence community sport needs to make the case for sport, monitor progress against the targets and learn about what works and why.
Sport England is the world leading community sport system. Their funding from the National Lottery and the Government is used in projects to help grass root participation. They work in partnership with UK Sport, which has responsibility for elite success, and the Youth Sport Trust, which is focused on PE and school sport. They also bring together a wide range of partners from local and national government, the commercial sector, higher and further education and the third sector to make the most of their investment in sport. Although their main role is to protect playing fields threatened by potential developments, they provide a wealth of expertise on planning, facilities, coaching, volunteering and sports development. Sport England has ploughed funding into 46 National governing bodies to increase participation numbers and create pathways for talented players. 34 of the NGB’s received targeted investment to get children and young people playing more sports. They will evaluate the progress and results in 2012 on the UK sports system. As an organisation they are working closely with a range of local, county and regional partners, such as local authorities, county sports partnerships and regional development agencies, to bring sport to people how, and where, they want it.
In order for Sport England to be successful they have to work closely with a wide range of organisations. A few examples of these are:
- Their sporting landscape partners – Youth Sport Trust and UK Sport
- National Governing Bodies of sports
- National partners
- Local authorities
- County Sports Partnerships
- Higher and Further Education
- The third sector
- The commercial sector
- London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and the Olympic Delivery Authority
Sport England is actively involved with many projects helping to ensure a better sporting experience for the community. They use lottery and government funding in a wide range of projects, big or small. £120 million was put in to the Wembley National Stadium; this is an example of a major project. They are currently involved with the Manchester indoor BMX proposal, Portsmouth 50m pool including athletics and cycling, National centres project upgrades and many, many more.
Sport England’s main focus is to help develop community sports, therefore it aims to help invest in organisations and programmes that will help to increase participation and the opportunities people have in sport.
Sport England states “In addition to our investment in key partners to deliver specific objectives, we are launching funding programmes open to a wide range of organisations. These include sports clubs, voluntary or community organisations, local authorities, schools, colleges and universities”
One of the main partnerships Sport England works with to provide funding is the national lottery.
Lottery funding states “Decisions about funding are made locally by the nine regional sports boards. Eligible projects will be assessed against the priorities laid out in each region’s sports plan and the National Framework for Sport”.
Sport England provides funding to increase participation but also helps in providing sports equipment, providing coaches and also helping to build new sports facilities. Another funding partnership Sport England has is with the national governing bodies of sports.
Sports England states “We are investing £480 million through 46 governing bodies over the next four years and have agreed grow, sustain and excel targets with each one. Each sport has developed a whole sport plan that explains how it will use this money to achieve these targets.”
The PE and Sports Strategy for Young People is a development that aims in giving young people the opportunity of participating in 5 hours of sport and physical activity a week.
The youth sports trust describes the strategy as “The Youth Sport Trust and Sport England are working with the DCSF and the DCMS on ways to help local delivery partners increase provision, demand and take-up amongst all young people (5-16 year olds) of their five hours a week of high-quality PE and sport (three hours for 16 -19 year olds)”.
The makeup of the five hours will involve offering at least 2 hours a week of high quality curriculum PE to 5-16 year olds. As well as that they are offering an extra 3 hours of sport through both school, community and club opportunities. This 3 hours of sport reaches out further and is offered to 5-19 year olds. The thought behind offering it to young people over the age of 16, is down to the fact that after that age PE no longer becomes compulsory in the curriculum. Therefore Sport England believes at that age they still need to be given the opportunity to participate in some form of sport.
As part of this strategy, Sport England has also developed programmes such as Club Links and Sports unlimited. As part of the Club Links programme, Sport England is not only trying to increase the amount of 5-19 year olds taking part in sport but also increase the amount of young people taking on leadership and volunteering jobs in sport.
Sport England states “We are investing £4.1m into the 34 sports to deliver an extra half million junior club participants or volunteers by 2012-2013”
Sport England is funding these programmes in order to help achieve the 5 hour participation offer and help increase the links between clubs and school sport.
The Sports Unlimited programme aims at providing sport to those considered ‘semi sporty’, which are young people who have an interest in sport but are yet to participate in community or club sport. They aim to deliver alternative sports which are different to the usual sports that must community and clubs already offer. By doing this they aim to get more young people interested because of offering something innovative and fun.
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Each change that has been decided such as the 5 hour offer, sport unlimited, club links and especially step into sport have all got similar reasons of why they have changed for the good of improving sport.
The main reason for these changes was to increase participation within community sport. This is done in three different ways through active communities which is to provide sport for everyone, so it was produced for anyone who wants to participate in sport. Active sports which is to support the sports participants especially the high quality and elite performers so they can gain more from their sports. And finally the last one is active schools and this is to ensure that school children get off to the right start in sport.
They have also made these choices to support talented sports participants from all different classed, cultural backgrounds to progress to the elite level and more medals can come through the higher standards of performance in sport for example there is now a programme that has been set up for the world class performers, for those who compete at the highest levels such as their country.
Some of these changes can also develop and maintain coaches. They help coaches to progress to a certain level of teaching and keep them constantly updated with new knowledge about each individual sport with new techniques and new tactical areas.
They create a network and link of sporting specific clubs and multi sport clubs for the younger generation. This ensures communication and helps sport to be more organised through more people helping and more events and competitive sport can occur. This can also lead to an increase in people wanting to volunteer for these competitions or events or more jobs for those who are struggling to find work.
It also helps increase fitness throughout the whole community by involving everyone as stated in the active communities were an increased number of participants is being adopted and worked upon, and there will be more facilities to participate in sport, as they aim to ensure the right facilities are provided in the correct places, and kept at a high standard which involves alto of planning, designing and development but new places entice people to use them therefore increasing participation.
The new change step into sport has three reasons alone for why it has been started. It sustains involvement in leadership and volunteering in port. For the “personal change” in the younger people by supporting the development of inter personal skills, self – confidence and a sense of responsibility. Finally it’s “structural change” through working with key agencies to offer broader opportunities for young people to make a formal and valued contribution to the delivery of sport. (lecture slides)
Sport England [online] last accessed 25th April 2010 at: http://www.sportengland.org/about_us.aspx
Club Links [Online] last accessed 28th April 2010 at: http://www.sportengland.org/support__advice/children_and_young_people/community_and_club_activities/club_links.aspx
Investing in National Governing Bodies [Online] Last accessed 30th April 2010 at: http://www.sportengland.org/funding/ngb_investment.aspx
Funding Guidelines [Online] last accessed 1st may 2010 at: http://www.sportengland.org/funding.aspx
Lottery Funding [Online] last accessed 30th April 2010 at: http://www.lotteryfunding.org.uk/uk/sport-england
The PE & Sport Strategy for Young People[Online] last accessed 28th April 2010 at: http://www.youthsporttrust.org/page/pessyp/index.html