Meet our new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team

By Sported |  21st December 2021

Through Sported’s new 4 year strategy, Reach.Include.Empower, launched in April 2021, we set out our 3 priority areas for the next 4 years – wellbeing, inequality and community.

Thanks to a 3-year grant from The National Lottery Community Fund, we have been able to turbocharge our commitment to each area. In particular, we are excited to announce 3 new appointments to lead our work in this space; a new Strategic Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) lead, a Race Equity Lead and a Wellbeing Lead.

This new level of capacity and expertise will enable us to better understand and deliver for our network ensuring greater impact for young people across the UK.

Isha Sadiq – Strategic EDI Lead

Isha joins us with a wealth of knowledge and experience. She joins from The Scouts, where she began as Senior Inclusion Officer in 2019 and then EDI Manager. In this role, Isha was instrumental in supporting the development of the EDI strategy, which involved leading their race equity review and driving a programme to attract young Muslims to The Scouts.

Prior to this, Isha worked as a Women’s Advocate providing wrap-around support to those in the criminal justice system and has experience volunteering at the National Domestic Violence helpline and Raleigh International. Isha is passionate and dedicated to making a positive impact on the lives of young people and is excited to be joining the Sported team.

In her own words, she believes in working towards creating a more equitable society, and amplifying the voices of those who are under-served.

Zain Shaffi – Race Equity Lead

Having previously provided insight, expertise and support on equality issues for a FTSE 100 company, and for Bristol City Council, Zain joins with some fantastic experience. Zain worked as a Commissioner on Racial Equality, set up by Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees, to look at race discrimination and inequality in Bristol. He also played an integral part in the strategic recovery of Bristol’s One City approach to addressing the disproportionate impact Covid 19 has had on ethnic minority communities.

Alongside this, Zain worked as a training facilitator, the Ethnic Minority Financial Inclusion Lead and sat on the Cultural Diversity Committee at Hargreaves Lansdown.

Zain will bring his experience to Sported working towards bridging the gap on race equity and increasing the representation and voices of ethnic minorities, empowering young people of all backgrounds to succeed in Sport through Sport. We have no doubt he is going to be a great asset to the Sported team.

Penny Rabone – Wellbeing Lead

Penny has a huge amount of experience behind her in physical activity and health development, having worked alongside the NHS, Local Authorities, Charities and National Governing Bodies.  Most recently she was a Health and Wellbeing Manager at Swim England working on the Water Wellbeing Programme which won ‘highly commended’ in the Healthy Communities award category in the 2021 UK Active awards. 

Penny has a vast knowledge of the wellbeing sector, with a passion for mental health whilst also considering wider implications on wellbeing such as youth unemployment and housing.  Penny has experience utilising insight and using this to set up service user led programmes.   Penny is keen to work in partnership with a variety of organisations to avoid re-inventing the wheel, but also use collaborative expertise to ensure quality and robust work is developed. 

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