Sport for Development Coalition unveils supporting partners

The Sport for Development Coalition (SFDC) has unveiled some of the key partners who will be supporting its mission to build a national ‘Movement’ of organisations using sport and physical activity to generate positive social outcomes.

Last week the SFDC revealed it was to receive new National Lottery funding from Sport England, along with further support from Comic Relief and Laureus Sport for Good.

Now it has announced it will work with partners including the Sport and Recreation Alliance, Made By Sport, and ConnectSport as it seeks to grow the Movement of organisations which includes national networks such as Active Partnerships and individual delivery organisations like Greenhouse Sports. As it grows, the SFDC is open to working with more partners that share its ambition to create a nationwide Movement.

The Sport and Recreation Alliance will host the SFDC team in its London offices whilst the Coalition develops its governance and organisational structure.

Chief Executive Lisa Wainwright said: “The Sport and Recreation Alliance is delighted to partner with the Sport for Development Coalition, an organisation which strongly shares our vision, values and purpose.

“Now more than ever, this type of collaboration is essential as we come together to encourage the nation to become happier and healthier through physical activity. We want to drive change using sport and recreation to empower positive social outcomes and to overcome stubborn inequalities that still remain.


“We know how physical activity can positively impact the lives of communities across the country and we look forward to working with the Coalition to evidence, showcase and highlight how sport and recreation can play an essential role across society.”

Andy Reed, Chair of the SFDC, said: “We are grateful to the Sport and Recreation Alliance for hosting us and we look forward to working with them as we grow the Movement along with partners across the sport and physical activity sector.”

The SFDC has been working closely with Made By Sport since it was launched in June 2019 by Prince Harry and boxers Anthony Joshua and Nicola Adams. The charitable campaign aims to raise the profile of sport for development and elevate the power of sport to change young people’s lives in the national consciousness as well as raising new funds for the sector.

The SFDC and Made By Sport will work together with the Coalition’s network of organisations to help inform and evidence the issues that will drive Made by Sport’s campaigns. Sophie Mason, Chief Executive of Made By Sport, said: “I am delighted that the SFDC has secured this funding from Sport England, Comic Relief and Laureus Sport for Good.  The amazing work done by the whole sector has been underfunded and under-valued by a sport-loving nation as a whole. We need compelling stories and evidence that will help everyone appreciate that sport is the most powerful tool we have to address social issues.  With the inequality gap now widening, we need this more than ever.”


ConnectSport will continue as media and communications partner for the SFDC. The not-for-profit media channel for UK sport for development and community sport also provides content and communications services to the sector, and has been supporting the Coalition since 2016. Founded by the former Sports Editor of the Press Association, Simon Lansley, its aim is to build a workforce of journalists that is more diverse and representative of modern society.

Simon said: “We have been honoured to support the SFDC over the last few years, and we’re excited to be playing a part as it evolves and gathers momentum, with organisations of all sizes and from all communities across the regions becoming involved. Telling their stories and demonstrating their impact is our mission, and our passion.”

The partners will support the SFDC’s mission to work closely with networks such as the 43 Active Partnerships across England who work in collaboration with local partners – both inside and outside of sport – to build more active communities. Lee Mason, Chief Executive of Active Partnerships, said: “We are delighted to work with the SFDC and collaborate with all the partners involved to help create the conditions for an active nation, and use the power of sport and physical activity to transform lives across all communities.”


They will also aim to champion and support the outstanding work of individual charities and delivery organisations like Greenhouse Sports who work in more than 50 schools across London to provide long-term coaching and mentoring to pupils in the greatest need of support. CEO Béatrice Butsana-Sita said: “These destabilising times have revealed more than ever the role sport and all physical activity has to play in the health and welfare of a society that can offer opportunity for all. It is not only welcome but hugely important that the SFDC has secured funding from Sport England, Comic Relief and Laureus Sport for Good, to assist charities like ours unlock the power of sport and change lives.”

The SFDC is currently advertising for an Executive Director who is expected to be appointed within the next three months. Find out more about the role here.

Pic credits: Greenhouse Sports; LTA Serves / Sporting Equals.