Bridging the Gap

Improving how agencies and funders connect with community groups in the most deprived areas

The Bridging the Gap project was undertaken to look at how to best support community organisations using sport and physical activity to change the lives of young people in some of England’s most deprived communities.


Funded by Sport England, Sported spent two years working with Sported members delivering in bottom 20% IMD areas and with partners from across the sports sector (National Governing Bodies, County Sports Partnerships) and outside (Funders, Youth Organisations etc) to try and understand what it would take for agencies to work more effectively in these communities.


Why is this important?


If you live / have lived in poverty in the UK you…


 Are twice as likely to be a victim of crime and three times more likely to suffer significant emotional damage as a result of crime


 Are half as likely to achieve sufficient GCSEs (5 at grade A* to C)


• Are likely to live up to 10 years less than the average person in your locality


• More likely to suffer from diet-related diseases and more likely to develop mental illness


• Age 25 – 64, from routine or manual backgrounds, are twice as likely to die young as those from managerial or professional backgrounds


• 8 times more likely to have a teenage pregnancy




Chart from Sport England showing Inactivity levels across socioeconomic groups


However, if you have never sought to work in communities facing multiple deprivation, you may need some extra support. Or maybe you have tried in the past but it’s not worked out as planned.


The Blueprint for Engagement will help you on this journey. It will help you assess your strengths and weaknesses, understand why you’re looking to work in these communities, and give you practical assistance along the way.


We know that Sport for Development works. We know that groups working in these communities change the lives of the young people they engage. We know that together we can create a World Class Community Sport System.


Join us on that journey.