Six projects have been shortlisted for the ‘Sport for Social Change’ category at the 2019 SJA British Sports Awards on Thursday.
The award, created in conjunction with ConnectSport and the Sport for Development Coalition and supported by Oaks, aims to highlight the amazing work of organisations across the UK that are using sport and/or physical activity to create a positive impact on local communities and individuals in need.
A panel of judges, including representatives from the BBC, Sky Sports and The Guardian, selected six projects based on criteria which included impact, reach, sustainability and innovation. The shortlisted projects are (in no particular order):
Sporting Memories Foundation
Sporting Memories delivers reminiscence, social and inclusive physical activities that improve mental and physical wellbeing. It does this by tapping into people’s passion, knowledge and love of sport and supporting local people to run inclusive Sporting Memories Clubs with a wide range of activities designed to engage individuals regardless of physical or cognitive conditions. The activities support older people over the age of 50 years who may be socially isolated, older people who maybe living with conditions such as dementia and/or have increasingly limited mobility. Most of the beneficiaries are sedentary and take part in no physical activity. Find out more.
Luton Town FC Community Trust
The Community Trust’s ‘Luton Street League’ (LSL) project operates from 10 sports centres across the town offering different sports and league formats for young people aged 16 to 24 years, all aimed at improving community cohesion. Furthermore all of the centres offer employment, training and skills workshops to help participants either improve their current employability opportunities or future employment chances. The project focuses on unemployed and/or disengaged young people living in Luton’s 11 most deprived wards and and partners with Bedfordshire Cricket, Luton Basketball and Bedfordshire Police. Find out more.
Offload is a mental health project for men in socially deprived areas, with a high prevalence of suicide, that has been delivered in prisons, schools, colleges and a variety of workplaces, including local councils, power stations and construction sites. It is a collaboration between Rugby League Cares, State of Mind Sport and three professional Rugby League clubs - Salford Red Devils, Warrington Wolves and Widnes Vikings – which uses players from the clubs to help local men become equipped with tools and techniques to improve their wellbeing, develop self-management techniques and build resilience to enable them to cope better with life’s challenges. Find out more.
What started as a response to terrorism has grown into an award-winning organisation uniting some of the most diverse communities in the UK. Shortly after the 7/7 attacks in 2005, Salaam Peace was founded in Walthamstow to tackle negative perceptions of the local British Muslim community and it has grown into a multi-sport organisation providing leagues, after-school clubs, PE lessons in schools, group gym sessions and outdoor fitness to over 5000 people of different ages and backgrounds. Salaam Peace provides a forum for police, religious leaders, the Army and young people to come together, and engage with diverse and under-represented groups and communities from East London, the Midlands and the North West of England. Find out more.
Community Integrated Care Learning Disability Super League
One of Britain’s biggest social care charities, Community Integrated Care, has partnered with Super League and RFL to create a ground-breaking inclusive sports programme for people with learning disabilities and autism. Community Integrated Care Learning Disability Super League (LDSL) has seen 12 major clubs create learning disability rugby league teams, playing an adapted version of the game at high-profile Super League festivals and events. Find out more.
Panathlon Challenge gives 22,000 young people with disabilities and special needs every year the opportunity to take part in competitive sport. It engages 1,335 schools across England and Wales whose students (aged five to 18) take part in specially-adapted sporting competitions, including swimming, football, boccia and multi-sport ‘mini-Paralympics’. Despite having just five full-time staff, the charity delivered a staggering 460 events in 2018/19, and is on course to be accessible for disabled and SEN children in every county in the country by the end of 2020. Find out more.
The six projects will be invited to attend the event, which takes place at The Pavilion at The Tower of London on Thursday 28 November between noon and 4pm, and the winner will receive a business support package from Oaks, the official sponsor of the Sport for Social Change award.
To book your place for the 2019 SJA British Sports Awards, click here.