Sported announces new partnership with Sport England

By Sported |  10th March 2022

Sported, the largest network of sports and community groups in the UK, is among the first group of over 40 organisations working in partnership with Sport England to receive funding from its new funding model. Sported has a foundational role in the sport and physical activity sector and is therefore well placed to help level up access to sport and physical activity across the country.


Sported will receive National Lottery funding from Sport England over 5 years. Sported has been awarded long-term funding because it has committed to co-deliver change at a national and local level, to help more people enjoy the benefits of playing sport and being active.

All partner organisations were selected by Sport England due to their ability to influence positive change and drive improvements throughout the sector, their own networks, and beyond.  This is the first step on a journey to revolutionise Sport England’s approach to long-term partnerships which will see it build new relationships with innovative organisations, as well as with existing partners, local partners and delivery partners to further the Uniting the Movement strategy.

Sport England research shows that some groups are typically less active – like women, people with long-term health conditions, disabled people, people from ethnically diverse communities and lower socio-economic groups. Right now, the opportunities to get involved in sport and activity – and reap the rewards of being active – depend too much on your background, your gender, your bank balance and your postcode.

Sported will use the investment and partnership to tackle inequalities in and through community sports groups.  This partnership will allow our collective reach to grow and get more people active by breaking down barriers that exist for many groups of people.

Through the investment and strengthened partnership with Sport England, Sported will reach, include and empower the local workforce, building the resilience of community sports groups, helping them to survive and flourish so their young people and communities thrive. This investment will enable Sported to continue to tackle inequalities both in and through sport, learning from our members lived experience and working through our network and other system partners to provide support to initiate societal change. We will be able to support and work collaboratively with others within the sector and play a key role in Sport England’s Uniting the Movement strategy.

Tim Hollingsworth, CEO of Sport England:


“Sport England’s Uniting the Movement strategy aims to help everyone play sport and get active– no matter who they are, where they live, or what their background. But we know that certain groups are more likely to be inactive and need targeted support and investment. We can only innovate and tackle these inequalities effectively with collective action, recognising that this is about long-term change. Sported is one of a huge number of partners we are looking to work with on exactly this over the coming years.  They play a foundational role within the sport and physical activity sector and are therefore well-placed to create the conditions for change.  They will also act as a resource for other innovative organisations with the same goals as we seek to create a more equal society with everyone benefitting from sport and physical activity.”

Nicola Walker, CEO of Sported

We are delighted to be working in partnership with Sport England; there is so much overlap between our goals and theirs – in particular, around tackling the inequalities that exist for certain groups in society – like women, people with long-term health conditions, disabled people, people from ethnically diverse communities and lower socio-economic groups. So, it is very exciting for us to be working their Uniting the Movement strategy as we feel we can play a vital role in tackling the inequalities that exist for so many communities and their access to sport and physical activity.”

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