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£168,000 boost for disability sport in Rotherham

27 June 2014

Disabled people in Rotherham will have more opportunities to get involved in sport after Rotherham United Community Sports Trust received £168,000 of funding from Sport England’s Inclusive Sport fund.

The club is one of 44 projects across England that will benefit from £8.06 million of National Lottery investment from Sport England to open up more opportunities for disabled people to play sport.

The project targets adults with mental health issues who have limited access to sport. The specific groups which will be targeted are:
•    Adults diagnosed with psychosis (chronic depression, bi-polar and schizophrenia)
•    Adults who have experienced brain injury, triggering psychotic disorder
•    Adults with early dementia diagnosis that is leading to cognitive and mental deterioration.

The project will build the capacity of community organisations working with these groups by training support staff, carers and service users to deliver sport provisions to ensure sustainability and improve the long term access to sporting activity after the end of this funding.

Jamie Noble, Head of Community at Rotherham United said “This is an unbelievable achievement to get this funding. We are only one of 44 projects in the country and I think one of only a hand full doing work around mental health. As a football club, we are committed to supporting all communities in Rotherham and this is an area of work which we have seen a growing need for in the past couple of years.” He went on to add “We have had some fantastic support from the Rotherham Public Health & Sports Development Team as well as the partner organisation who will be involved in this project. We can’t wait to get going now!” 

Sport England Director of Insight, Lisa O’Keefe, said: “We are delighted to be able to help Rotherham United Community Sports Trust provide more opportunities for disabled people to give sport a go. Record numbers of disabled people now play sport and it’s thanks to clubs like this that we can continue to improve opportunities and make a real difference in communities.”

The number of disabled people playing sport regularly is on the rise. In December 2013, Sport England’s Active People Survey - an annual, in-depth measure of the nation’s sporting habits – revealed that a record number of disabled people in England now play sport each week. However, non-disabled people are still twice as likely to play sport as disabled people (39.2 per cent compared to 18.5 per cent) which is why Sport England continues to focus attention and investment to address this imbalance.

Sport England’s Inclusive Sport Fund supports programmes that aim to increase the number of disabled people playing sport. Since the fund launched, £17.1 million has been invested in 88 projects that make sport a viable lifestyle choice for disabled people. 

As well as funding disability sport programmes, Sport England also funds equipment. In addition to today's £8.06 million announcement, Sport England also recently awarded £1 million to 141 clubs across England to help them buy equipment to open up sport to disabled people. 

For more details about the project, please contact Jamie Noble on 07943611112 or email 

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