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Thursday 15 October 2015

Sports Solent fund local clubs

Three local youth sports clubs are running, jumping and dancing for joy, thanks to funding being awarded by Sport Solent in the Community.

The University’s charity is a small grant scheme that supports community groups and individuals in Hampshire to deliver programmes of sport or physical activity that benefit people in Hampshire.

It accepts bids between £100 and £1,000 for anything that facilitates sport, including equipment, training, coaching and venue hire.

YMCA Newtown Youth Centre, the Hurricane’s Rugby Club and Southampton Children’s Play Association were the successful clubs, chosen from the 39 bids received by the charity.

Professor Mike Wilkinson, charity trustee and Deputy Vice-Chancellor (external engagement) at Solent, said: “An important part of our vision as a university is to be a catalyst for social justice and, through the charity, these awards are helping local organisations address this important issue. We are proud to be able to help in this way.”

The YMCA Newtown Youth Centre helps to transform communities. In May 2015, they re-opened the YMCA youth and community centre to serve as a community hub with a range of services and sports available.

Speaking of how they used their grant, YMCA’s area director, Andrew Simpson, said: “We have been able to use the money to purchase much needed equipment that has made the opportunities for young people better and helped us to be able to structure our sessions better.”

Hurricane Rugby Club – based at Eastleigh Rugby Football Club – is the first club of its kind in the south of England. It works with young adults with learning difficulties and slight physical disabilities.

They asked for help funding a winter training kit so their team can train throughout the year.

Southampton Children’s Play Association provides organised play facilities for children aged five and over.

Speaking about the recent funding, Anna Roberts, Play Development Manager, said: “The funding was a huge benefit to us as we used it to provide sports and dance workshops throughout 11 individual play schemes during the summer holidays.”

Sport Solent in the Community is always on the lookout for new clubs and organisations it can help in the future, and fundraising activities are always being planned.

In its most recent fundraising effort, the University’s own Solent Sport staff took part in Tough Mudder in September 2015.

Participant Rebecca Jones, student workforce development officer at Solent, said: “The day was thoroughly enjoyable and it gives you an added sense of motivation knowing that the money is going to a good cause.

“As a relatively new charity, it helped raise awareness of the support that is being offered to the community.”

Donations to the charity can be made online