Nationally, there has never been a clearer message about the benefits of being physically active. Sport England and the National Lottery have tasked us with helping the voluntary, community and sport sector to engage and support the most disadvantaged and at need people in our communities, where moving more and being active for these people can have such a big impact.

We have a focus on working with community groups who engage and support people most affected by Covid, offering opportunities to co-create ideas and initiatives to improve physical and mental wellbeing.

We have been distributing funding to community organisations across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin since June 2020, and have collated so much amazing feedback and impact, supporting people to improve their health and lifestyle.

Priority Groups

Whilst we are here to listen and offer support to all local groups, Sport England has found that four groups in particular have been most affected by Covid and are experiencing the most inequalities. Specifically, impact on finances, the greater risk to health, and the fear of returning to everyday life, all increase the challenges for people to lead an active and healthy lifestyle.

Therefore, for this fund, we are wishing to hear from local activity providers and organisations who need assistance to keep activating or reaching out to:

  • People on lower incomes
  • People with long term health conditions
  • People with disabilities
  • People from ethnically diverse communities

lady pushing boy in wheelchair

What support can we offer?

We’re keen to chat to you so we can understand the impact of Covid-19 on your organisation and the target groups that you are working with. We’re keen to hear about any ideas you have to support these target groups with their health and wellbeing through physical activity and moving more.

We are happy to explore ideas such as: funding equipment to enable more activity to take place; facility costs where Covid-19 has caused groups to run at a deficit; workforce support and development including mentoring from a qualified instructor to introduce new activities or training for staff/volunteers to sustain activities.

We’re keen to hear ideas and shape them with you, there is no formal application process, we will do the work behind the scenes so you can continue doing the fantastic work in your community.

Organisations can apply up to £10,000 to support their project idea, although most projects we approve tend to be funded less than this.

To be eligible for the funding, the lead* organisation must:
  • Be a non-for-profit, voluntary or community club/organisation, community interest company or charity*.
  • Have a governing document/constitution.
  • Have an organisation bank account with at least 2 account signatories.
  • Have an up-to-date safeguarding policy(s) relevant to the audience they are supporting.
  • Have the relevant insurance in place
  • Not be a private business, or profit-making organisation unless they are a Social Enterprise or Community Interest Company*

*We appreciate that many excellent activity providers may not meet the above criteria, for example, they may be an independent, self-employed instructor. If you/your organisation don’t meet the above eligibility criteria please still contact us as we may be able to connect you with another organisation who can support you or we can explore whether you could become a community business or support you in other ways.

What can you expect?

A swift and friendly process - We like to meet with you and understand your challenges and ideas, if you are keen to explore more drop us an email through [email protected]

Our Empowering Communities Team and partners (Energize, Shropshire Council and Telford & Wrekin Council) will check your eligibility, understand your needs, and capture the impact of your project. The project will be sent to the Sport England panel for assessment. We expect funding to be distributed with 2 weeks of a successful outcome.