Sport England has revealed that the £2.6 million of investment will help increase the number of disabled people playing sport – and make grassroots sport more inclusive.
Only one in 15 disabled adults play sport regularly. For non-disabled people, this figure is one in six.
Sport England will – for the first time – directly funding five disability sports organisations:
- UK Deaf Sport
- British Blind Sport
- Cerebral Palsy Sport
- Dwarf Sport Association UK
- British Wheelchair Sport
Sport England will advise, support and guide other sports bodies as they create opportunities for participation by disabled people.
These organisations will receive a total of £1.1 million of National Lottery funding.
As well as this funding, £1.5 million of Exchequer funding has been awarded to the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS). The EFDS will now accelerate its strategy to increase sports participation by disabled people.
EFDS will now be the single point of contact for national governing bodies of sport and other sporting groups. EFDS will pull in impairment-specific information, support and advice from the five disability organisations and help ensure a consistent approach.
EFDS has been awarded £1,527,440 funding for a three-year period (July 2011 – March 2013). This breaks down as:
UK Deaf Sport – £281,974
British Blind Sport – £290,204
Cerebral Palsy Sport – £183,409
Dwarf Sports Association UK – £193,615
British Wheelchair Sport – £196,279
Sport England Chair, Richard Lewis:
“Our goal is to get many more disabled people playing sport and we can only achieve this through a changed approach – one where sports bodies integrate the sport on offer to disabled and non-disabled people as far as possible.“The investment we’re announcing today will ensure that those on the frontline of grassroots sport have easy access to the expertise they need to make this happen.”
EFDS Chair, Dame Tanni Grey Thompson:
“The investment recognises the incredible passion and expertise which underpins the disability sports organisations. Together, we will be able to help those involved in delivering sport to engage more disabled people so that they can gain the very real and often life changing benefits which sport can bring.“The timing could not be better to make sure disabled people will get the chance to benefit directly from the 2012 Paralympics and beyond. I know from my own experience that disabled people can benefit tremendously from sport and physical activity if the conditions are put in place to make sport genuinely inclusive.“I am confident that EFDS and the National Disability Sports Organisations will work in partnership with Sport England to deliver an impressive return on this investment.”