Sport For Good
15th April 2021
Since Goods For Good was set up nearly 7 years ago we have supported communities all over the world providing them with the essentials they need to live, including clothing and footwear. Over the years, through our partnerships with organisations such as Uniqlo, Nike, Puma and Adidas, we've delivered sports kit and footwear to communities in the UK and overseas to enable them to access sport activities.
From local community football leagues to holiday programmes for disadvantaged children, the goods we've delivered have provided these individuals with access to activities they wouldn't ordinarily be able to take part in. But these goods have provided more than just providing access to sport. We hear frequently how the goods we've delivered have positively impacted their mental, emotional and physical wellbeing. As well as providing them with access to services and support they wouldn't have been able to access previously.
It can be hard to understand how much value something as simple as a pair of trainers can have, when clothing and footwear are basics we take for granted. But for many of the people we've helped support, they've provided purpose, hope and healing. That's why we've launched our Sports For Good initiative.
What is Sport For Good and how does it help?
Time and time again, sports-based programs have shown to be central to promoting inclusion and creating opportunities for individuals as a means to establish mutual trust and create healthier communities. Sports For Good promotes our three central pillars which aim to:
1. help poverty-stricken families both in the UK and overseas;
2. improve physical, mental and emotional health;
3. work towards a greener planet.
Working with organisations who support vulnerable communities we will deliver sports kit and footwear, so those people in need have the means to access the services and support networks available to them.
Currently in its pilot phase, we have been working closely with with our network of charity partners to identify communities who would benefit most from this initiative.
Who is involved?
As part of our pilot we have been working with our partners. including Care4Calais, New Citizen's Gateway (formerly Barnet Refugee Services), Small Acts of Kindness, Herts Young Homeless and Street Games. There is a lot of work underway currently with schools and youth clubs in areas of deprivation to increase physical activity for disadvantaged children including refugees and asylum seekers.
Most recently we have been working in conjunction with Watford Council and Herts Sports Partnership (HSP)to support their Fit, Fed and Read Programme - and initiative for young people aged 8-11 who receive free school meals - which provides food and activities during the holiday periods.We are looking forward to working more closely with Herts Sports Partnerships over the coming months to support them with the projects and groups they support throughout Hertfordshire, which work to address issues such as poverty, mental health, access to sport for women and girls and rehabilitation programmes for youth offenders.
Working with our network of charity partners locally we plan to eventually roll this out nationally.
Who does Sport For Good help?
Our network of charity partners support a range of people including refugees and asylum seekers, the homeless, the elderly, teenage parents, deprived children, people suffering with mental health and vulnerable families and individuals. Below are some of the organisations, programmes and people we've been able to support, so far, through the Sport For Good initiative.
Care4Calais - Sunday Football Training Scheme
Care4Calais' Football Training Scheme takes place every and reaches out, in particular to the younger Asylum Seekers, many who have been victims of trafficking and abuse. Care4Calais have been supporting approximately 120 young Asylum Seekers in Brent and Barnet since June 2020, and 60 families.
Covid restrictions and BREXIT mean that their claims have been hugely delayed and they have been forced to isolate in hostel rooms for months and months. Mental Health is very very poor, and even the most motivated have really suffered. The football training scheme has been invaluable invaluable for the mental health of the boys who take part.
Herts Sport Partnership - Fit Fed & Read Programme
Fit, Fed & Read (FFR) is a holiday activity programme ‐ including support with literacy ‐ in Hertfordshire's most disadvantaged neighbourhoods, which provides a range of cultural, physical and educational activities as well as a hot, nutritious meal, free of charge, for the children who take part.
This Easter we delivered sports kit donated by our corporate partner Nike to the 200 children who took part, many of whom didn't have suitable footwear to take part in the physical activities available to them. Two of the girls at the Hemel FFR, are now looking to join local football opportunities so they ‘can wear their boots’, which may help achieve the ultimate goal of the programme to inspire long-term active lives.
Herts Young Homeless - Jayden's Story
Fiona is an Intensive Outreach Worker at HYH and she recently fed back to us how the trainers gave her the opportunity to connect with one of the young people she was struggling to engage with. Jayden had been through a period of great change in the past few months, his living situation and the loneliness and isolation caused by the lockdown were compounding his mental health issues. He was refusing to engage with his outreach worker which meant working together to improve his situation was very difficult. Providing Jayden with the new trainers offered him something positive and helpful, it showed that others cared about him and wanted him to move forward and make progress. Jayden's trust in Fiona has improved and they now have a stronger connection which will help them to achieve the best possible outcomes together.