Sport England has launched a new £16.5 million fund to give additional help to the sport and physical activity sector during the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
The Return to Play Fund will support groups, clubs and organisations who’ve been impacted by restrictions brought in to tackle the disease, and is part of our overall response to the crisis that now includes more than £220m of government and National Lottery funding.
Our chief executive, Tim Hollingsworth, said the fund would particularly focus on tackling inequalities in activity that have worsened over the last six months.
With ever changing restrictions and measures being put in place throughout England, there is a continuing urgent need for us to try and support grassroots organisations to put in place the necessary support to safely get everyone active in local areas over the coming months.
The fund, which will welcome applications from today, is made up of three parts:
- £10m - small grants of between £300 and £10,00 to help sport and activity groups, clubs and organisations respond to the immediate challenges of returning to play in a Covid-safe environment.
- £5m - Community Asset Fund which will provide grants ranging in value from £10,001 to £50,000. It’ll help local sports clubs and organisations to adapt and open important places and spaces that can help them welcome back their local community safely.
£1.5 m - Active Together - this crowdfunding initiative will help sports clubs and organisations set up their own campaigns to help sustain them through the crisis.
It's a great alternative if they don’t meet the priority groups of the other parts of the Return to Play package, and we'll match crowd funds of up to £10,000 to help cover the loss of income.
The Return to Play Fund will especially seek to support those groups and organisations working with audiences we’ve identified as finding it more difficult to be active at this time.
- Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities
- people on lower incomes
- those disproportionately affected financially as a result of the crisis
- disabled people and people with long-term health conditions
- those who are experiencing a greater burden of care responsibilities since the pandemic began.
I know the new funding will make a huge difference as winter approaches. Local clubs offer so much to their communities and it’s hugely important that we support them to keep people fit and healthy as we head into winter. This welcome funding will enable people across the country to enjoy sport safely, boosting their mental and physical health in the months ahead.
For more information, do have here: https://www.sportengland.org/news/return-play-fund-launched.