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- 10 September 2013 00:00
- in Government
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- Last Modified: 20 September 2013 04:44
Disabled people across the country are set to be given more opportunities to get involved in sport thanks to an £8 million injection of National Lottery funding from Sport England.
Statistics show that disabled people are only half as likely to play sport on a weekly basis compared to non-disabled but it is hoped that the new funding will help to bridge the opportunity gap.
Of the £8 million funding, £7 million will be invested through the Inclusive Sport fund with £1 million to go through the new disability equipment fund called Get Equipped.
The Inclusive Sport fund will offer disabled people more opportunities to play sport by investing in organisations with good ideas and the right expertise to make this happen.
Meanwhile Get Equipped will address the need for specialist equipment to deliver disability sport by giving clubs the chance to apply for up to £10,000 of funding each.
"Last summer’s Paralympic Games were a real game changer for disability sport but at the grassroots we need to do more to make sport a practical choice for many more disabled people,” explained Sport England chief executive Jennie Price.
"Whether or not you are the next Jonnie Peacock, if you want to play sport, we want to make sure you have access to the right facilities, equipment and coaching.”
The investment announcement builds on the work already being done by Sport England to make grassroots sport truly open to everyone with over £157 million being invested in programmes and projects to increase the number of disabled people playing sport via the organisation’s legacy programmes and Youth and Community Strategy.
"As part of the Paralympic legacy we want to see increased opportunities for disabled people to get involved in sport and ensure we have the funding to support that ambition,” said Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Maria Miller.
"This £8 million of public funding will go towards disability sport projects up and down the country and provide essential equipment to get more disabled people participating.”
Sport England is also working with Sainsbury’s on the Active Kids for All Inclusive Community Training programme to improve the quality of sport provision for disabled people in the community.
By 2016, the programme will have trained 10,000 community activity leaders and coaches to deliver confident, sports-based grassroots sessions for disabled people.