Fitness programme for BAME females claims monthly award

A sports and fitness programme aimed at women and girls from BAME communities has been revealed as the latest recipient of ConnectSport’s monthly video award.

The ‘Stronger Communities through Sport’ award encourages community-based organisations across London to upload a short video explaining what they do, to a specially-created page on the ConnectSport website.

The award is supported by the Mayor of London as part of its ‘Sport Unites’ funding programme, with one organisation receiving £250 each month.

‘Step Up 2 Fitness’, which works principally with BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) females in the North Paddington area, has been selected for the July award.

Step Up 2 Fitness focuses on the wellbeing of women and girls by delivering functional fitness sessions, nutritional workshops and outdoor challenges.

Organiser Hasna Kahlalech explained: “Our participants reflect the diversity living in North Paddington area and beyond.

“Our motto is to reduce the disparity and inequalities for accessing fitness sessions that affect women and girls in general and even more so amongst BAME communities.

“Our sessions run three times a week at the Stowe Centre and the Academy Sport Centre, as well as an outdoor running group which is extremely popular and demonstrates the need for these type of activities.”

Step Up 2 Fitness follows London Otters Rowing Club and ReachOut UK as recipients of the award in May and June.

Debbie Weekes-Bernard, Deputy Mayor of London for Social Integration, described how the partnership with ConnectSport links into the Mayor’s Sport Unites campaign.

She told ConnectSport: “We are interested at looking at using sport to tackle social isolation, to improve mental health, to create a healthier and more engaged city, but also to create some of those links and connections between people from very different backgrounds.

“We think that sport is a really good way of bringing people together, just by virtue of their love of sport – either as participants or as fans. It’s a great way for us to achieve some of the outcomes that we have set ourselves for tackling some of those big issues, like improving mental health, like helping to reduce levels of knife crime, like giving young people a sense of structure and a sense of purpose, and enabling them to learn skills which will help them become adults, and participate as adults in a city that is multi-cultural, diverse and vibrant.”

To submit your video, visit