DKH Legacy Trust chair and Double Olympic Champion, Dame Kelly Holmes, welcomes the findings from the Sport England’s Sporting Champions and Sport Unlimited programme that it’s effort to keep young people in sport is working.
The initiative, managed by DKH Legacy Trust in partnership with Creating Excellence, inspires less active young people to take up a sport through Sports Unlimited’s sport taster sessions. The last year has seen over 2000 young people meet with Sport England’s 20 top Sporting Champions to inspire them to take up and play a sport they are interested in.
These include four of the Trust’s newly recruited world class athletes; Ross Davenport, Double Commonwealth Gold Swimming champion, Jayant Mistry, former Britain’s No 1 and World top 10 wheelchair tennis player, Sue Smith, England Footballer and Siobhan Chamberlain, England Football goal keeper.
In its first year, the programme has been successful in retaining over 80 percent of the young people who took part throughout the entire duration of the initiative and was awarded the London 2012 Inspire mark as recognition of the impact it is having on young people.
Dame Kelly Holmes, Chair of DKH Legacy Trust, said,
“With the London 2012 Olympics fast approaching, it is fantastic that Sport England’s Sporting Champions programme is really making a difference in motivating young people to stay engaged in sport.
"When I was a teenager, I was thrilled when I got the chance to meet Tessa Sanderson, (at Butlin’s)! Meeting her really encouraged me to stick with my running and l am delighted that through the Sporting Champions Programme, so many young people are meeting these fantastic role models to inspire them too.”
Sport England’s Director of Children and Young People, Mike Diaper, said,
“Visits from Sporting Champions linked to our Sport Unlimited programme have inspired young people to try a sport and then carry on playing it”
“Engagement with the champions has helped provide young people with a different and positive perspective of sport.”
Source: DKH Legacy Trust