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Sporting Equals awarded £1m by Sport England to grow BME participation in sport

January 24, 2013

Sport England is investing £1 million in Sporting Equals to help get more people from black and minority ethnic (BME) communities involved in sport over the next two years.

Sporting Equals has been commissioned to help sports’ groups to attract more women and men from BME communities. The investment is part of Sport England’s overall funding package for 46 different sports of close to half a billion pounds over the next four years.

BME communities account for around 20% of the population in England and Wales, with major growth in the past decade. Ethnic minorities now make up 55% of London’s population and almost 50% of Birmingham’s.

Sport England’s Director of Sport, Lisa O’Keefe, said: “Sporting Equals has a vital role to play in helping sport providers to engage BME communities and encourage more people to get involved. The Cultural Event and Faith Centre are examples of how their approach is delivering impact in local communities. We look forward to continuing to work closely with Sporting Equals.”

Arun Kang, Chief Executive of Sporting Equals, said: “This is great news for the organisation, and I am delighted that Sport England have made such a positive statement about Sporting Equals in terms of our capabilities and the impact that we have made to increase participation within diverse communities.

“I would like to thank Sport England for their ongoing commitment to our work and agenda. With their investment we can make a real difference in introducing sport to those who are currently disengaged, and empower those who seek to progress. We believe that as the face of Britain continues to change there are considerable opportunities for the sport sector to grow participation by connecting under-represented communities to sports providers.”

The new funding will help Sporting Equals to:

  • Join things up locally between sports governing bodies, county sports partnerships and BME communities including faith groups, ethnic media and ethnic businesses
  • Deliver proven models across the country, helping turn interest into regular sports participation
  • Draw upon its network, local knowledge and expertise to ensure that sport reaches grassroots BME communities.
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