London, England, February 3, 2009 - Premier League football clubs are to offer thousands of young people the chance to get involved in Olympic sports in a groundbreaking £3.8 million partnership with the Government.
Volleyball is one of the four sports to be offered to thousands of young people in partnership with football’s top tier along with badminton, judo and table tennis.
Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Andy Burnham and Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore launched the ‘Premier League 4 Sport’ scheme at Tottenham Hotspur’s training ground in Chigwell, Essex on Friday 16th January.
Prime Minister Gordon Brown said:
"This initiative is great news for young people and communities and will help get thousands more teenagers participating in sports over the next few years, building on our goal to get young people doing five hours of sport a week.
“The Premier League, under Richard Scudamore's leadership, has shown a continuing commitment to community sport and shown how the power of football and strong links with clubs can be used to engage young people and strengthen communities.
“In the run up to 2012, we want to see more young people from all walks of life getting involved in sport. These new clubs are an excellent example of the how the Olympic legacy will benefit people right across the country for years to come and how the Games can be used to inspire more people to get active.”
They were joined by Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp and Spurs players Ledley King (pictured above), Jonathan Woodgate, Michael Dawson and Luka Modric.
All 20 clubs in football’s top flight will link up with community sport clubs to help attract young people in their local area and offer them opportunities in badminton, judo, table tennis and volleyball.
The initiative will help the Government’s ambition to offer young people five hours of sport a week, as part of its 2012 legacy plans. It will also address the drop-off in sports participation when young people leave secondary school.
The Premier Chief Executive Richard Scudamore said:
“Premier League clubs are at the heart of their communities, delivering quality projects that tackle a range of important issues. In fact, under the banner of our Creating Chances community initiative, over 1.4 million people took part in the many different activities run by our clubs last season.
“Premier League 4 Sport will build on this existing work, encouraging young people who love football to think about taking up another sport. With the pedigree that our clubs have in delivering projects I am confident it will be a huge success.”
Working with the sports governing bodies, the Youth Sport Trust and Sport England, the Premier League clubs aim to get 25,000 young people, aged between 11 and 16, to join local sport clubs in the four Olympic sports during the three year scheme.
Each Premier League club will be linked to four community sport clubs in their local area which will work in partnership with the football club. The 80 community sport clubs will be linked to four secondary schools in the area creating a total of 320 satellite clubs. Each Premier League club will appoint a project co-ordinator who will manage the scheme locally and work with clubs and school sports departments to maximise opportunities for young people.
The community clubs and schools will benefit from the strength and use of Premier League clubs’ brands.
Premier League 4 Sport will build on the success of the Premier League’s current community programme and aims to get children from all backgrounds involved in non-traditional, club-based sport.
Volleyball England Chief Executive Officer Lisa Wainwright said:
“Volleyball England is excited about the new opportunity this partnership with the Premier League provides us as an Olympic and Paralympic sport we see this project helping to recruit and support young players at a local level to come into volleyball. Twinned with our Lets Play Volleyball junior development programme and the Volley 123 club accreditation scheme this is another great intervention to help us achieve our aim of getting more young people to enjoy volleyball. Having successfully achieved our targets around club development over the last four years this project will be among the first to help us to deliver our new strategic aim and direction for clubs moving towards 2012 and beyond.”
For information on how the scheme will be implemented please call the Premier League on 020 7864 9179.
The Premier League is involved in a wide range of community activities, investing over £120 million a season down through the game. For more on the 'Creating Chances' programme, or to read about some of the projects that the clubs deliver, visit: www.premierleague.com/creatingchances
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