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- 20 August 2014 00:00
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Around 1,100 young people from disadvantaged communities across the UK have tried a range of unusual sports at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park as part of the innovative StreetGames Multi Sport Festival.
The festival, which was run by national sports charity StreetGames and supported by Coca-Cola Great Britain, is designed to bring together young people from disadvantaged communities and give them the chance to try a range of new sports.
The youngsters aged 12-25 competed in iconic Olympic and Paralympic venues such as the Copper Box and participated in taster sessions in traditional sports such as basketball and tennis to more unusual sports like parkour, indoor canoeing, zorbing, TriVolle and BMX.
Research shows that 70% of the most disadvantaged young people in the UK want to take part in more sport, but they are half as likely to get involved compared with their more affluent peers.
The festival was free to those attending meaning that disadvantaged young people has the opportunity to take part without their usual barriers such as cost or travel.
"Young people tell us that they want a more vibrant and varied sporting offer and it’s important to give them the chance to leave their community and try new things,” said StreetGames CEO Jane Ashworth.
"We hope that this inspiration will grow into a sporting habit for life.”
The festival is also part of Coca-Cola Great Britain’s wider commitment to encourage people to live more active, healthy lifestyles and is a key element of its partnership with StreetGames, which has been running since 2010.
Other similar festivals will be running this summer in Manchester and Cardiff and will count towards the company's ambition to get one million people active through their programmes by 2020.
"This is the second year we've held the London festival on the Olympic Park and we are delighted to be able to give more young people the chance to enjoy a whole range of free sports and activities in such an inspirational venue,” said Coca-Cola Great Britain & Ireland General Manager Jon Woods.
"By teaming up with StreetGames and running these festivals, we hope to inspire and encourage more young people to be more active and lead healthier lifestyles.”