«More than a GaMe harnessing the power of sport to transform the lives of disadvantaged young people a policy report by the Sport Working Group ...»
More than a GaMe
harnessing the power of sport to transform the lives of
disadvantaged young people
a policy report by the Sport Working Group
Chaired by Michael de Giorgio
About the Centre for Social Justice 3
Chairman’s foreword 6
Members of the CSJ Sport Working Group 8 Executive summary 12 1 Sport, disadvantage and social reform 23
1.1 Sport and social policy – where have we come from? 24
1.2 What is disadvantage? 26
1.3 Tension between assumptions and evidence 28
1.4 The impact of sports programmes – which factors make for 30 a positive impact?
1.5 Playing together – the principle of integration 32
1.6 Hitting the target – transformation as a goal 34 2 Governance and leadership 39
2.1 A lack of leadership for sport 39
2.2 General direction of sport policy 40
2.3 School sport 42
2.4 What progress on participation? 43
2.5 School sport 47
2.6 Planning for the future 51
2.7 A new landscape for school port 52
2.8 How will changes affect sport’s social role? 53
2.9 Better leadership and clearer accountability 53
2.10 Placing a social agenda for sport at the heart of policy 54
2.11 Disability sport 56 3 Maximising the potential of coaching 59
3.1 Introduction 59
3.2 Social change through coaching – what challenges do we face? 60
3.3 Equipping coaches 62
3.4 Realising the potential of coaching 66
3.5 A new approach to coaching 68 1 More than a Game | Contents 4 Access to facilities 73
4.1 How can we maximise our stock of sports facilities to e
The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) aims to put social justice at the heart of British politics.
Our policy development is rooted in the wisdom of those working to tackle Britain’s deepest social problems and the experience of those whose lives have been affected by poverty. Our Working Groups are non-partisan, comprising prominent academics, practitioners and policy makers who have expertise in the relevant fields. We consult nationally and internationally, especially with charities and social enterprises, who are the champions of the welfare society.
In addition to policy development, the CSJ has built an alliance of poverty fighting organisations that reverse social breakdown and transform communities.
We believe that the surest way the Government can reverse social breakdown and poverty is to enable such individuals, communities and voluntary groups to help themselves.
The CSJ was founded by Iain Duncan Smith in 2004, as the fulfilment of a promise made to Janice Dobbie, whose son had recently died from a drug overdose just after he was released from prison.
Executive Director: Gavin Poole More than a Game: Harnessing the power of sport to transform the lives of disadvantaged young people © The Centre for Social Justice, 2011 Published by the Centre for Social Justice, 1 Westminster Palace Gardens, Artillery Row, SW1P 1RL www.centreforsocialjustice.org.uk ISBN: 978-0-9567426-2-9 Designed by Soapbox, www.soapboxcommunications.co.uk
The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) was set up in 2004 to seek answers to the poverty that blights parts of Britain. Since then, we have produced over 50 publications looking at a wide spectrum of social issues, seeking to harness the experience and dedication of grass-roots organisations into the policy formation process. In January 2010 we launched six new policy areas, expanding the CSJ’s overview into areas such as youth justice, mental health, older age and sport. This report is the second of those new areas to publish after Outcome-Based Government in January 2011, while the rest will be released over the course of the summer and autumn.
This report, More than a Game, seeks to examine the use of sport as a tool to engage and work with young people in our most deprived communities. Britain is a famously enthusiastic sporting nation, with millions of people participating in sport a week and hundreds of thousands attending professional sports matches. For three weeks in August 2012, this fact will be attested to, as London becomes the first city to host the Olympic Games three times.
Sports clubs are a vital thread in the fabric of our society, while across the UK, there are organisations and individuals that are making the most of sport’s ability to inspire people to achieve things they had never thought possible. It is this last potential of sport – its social power – that led the CSJ to commission this report. Our Working Group has drawn on the evidence gathered from leading practitioners, its own experience and from the conversations held over the last 18 months with some of the most influential people in British sport. A set of recommendations has emerged which, if implemented, will radically alter our ability to harness sport as a tool for social good.
Vitally, the report draws a firm distinction between the promotion of sport in a generalised way and the clear, logical steps we need to harness it as a recognised and reliable feature of social policy. We argue that this distinction, which has long been apparent to both practitioners and researchers, needs to be enshrined in the way we fund and view sport as an area of public policy. By handing lead responsibility for sport to tackle social problems to the Department for Education, we recommend radical political and governance reform. Experts in particular fields, such as crime reduction, the fight against childhood obesity and the use of sport in education would remain autonomous, but under this proposal ministers and officials would be equipped to use sport as a powerful route out of poverty.
In the report we also set out how the promise of a world-leading coaching system can finally be fulfilled. Crucial to this is the persuasive case for investment in our coaches – the people
In publishing this report my thanks go to all who have played a part in shaping it. Particular thanks should go to Michael de Giorgio, who has led the process with dedication and expertise. I hope it will spark the reforms that Michael and his team have worked so hard for, and that so many young people in our poorest neighbourhoods would benefit from.
Gavin Poole CSJ Executive Director
I came to this country from Malta as a young boy. Like all children, I wanted an identity, a role and friends. Sport gave me every one of them. It boosted my self-esteem and even gave me a small measure of success.
Since then, I have believed that every child ought to have access to the same range of sporting opportunities which I had known, regardless of income, family background or ability. This was the driving force behind my decision to set up a charity called Greenhouse in 2002, and it is why I agreed to chair this report for the CSJ.
Sport, at its best, can be a forum for enjoyment, friendship and personal fulfilment. The same can be said for the arts and other activities – but sport enjoys a vast constituency and a hold on the national imagination. For more than a hundred years, various sports have also offered young people goals to work towards, whether they are able to realise their aspirations of fame and success, or whether, like me, their success in a more modest sporting arena helps them to succeed in other areas as well.
I welcome the Government’s recent commitment to focusing sports policy on young people, because I believe that by investing in the young, we instil the potential for lifelong enjoyment and participation in sport.
Participation, however, should not be seen as an end in itself – or at least not the only end. This is especially true given the enormous amount of money having been spent on sport over the last few years and the fact participation figures are declining. Sport can do more. It can achieve some of the social outcomes that will help, even transform, our society. To achieve this, there has to be a significant redistribution of funds. Just now there are allocations amounting to hundreds of millions of pounds dedicated to ‘growing and sustaining’ participation in sport. Many of these could be spent to radically better effect – more of it must be targeted more specifically on sports programmes for disadvantaged young people. I have observed through my experiences at Greenhouse and this CSJ review, that sport can reach and change this group. It can improve their life chances by increasing educational attainment and building life skills. The key ingredients for a successful programme seem to include: long term funding which enables forward planning and more importantly, commitment to the young people on these programmes; high quality coaches who are also trained to be
In just over one year, London will become the first city to host the Olympic Games for a third time. While much of the £9.4 billion investment has been spent on things the world will notice for three weeks, the success of the Games will be judged on the changes we see in Britain over thirty years or more. In 2005, Lord Coe promised the world that the London Games would deliver a sporting legacy, inspiring young people across the country to take up sport. This report suggests that one achievable and worthwhile legacy would be to transform the lives of disadvantaged young people through sport.
In publishing More than a Game I would like to extend my thanks to all the members of the Working Group as well as our talented researcher and writer, Christopher Perfect, who have contributed so much. Their knowledge and commitment have enabled us to produce a report which, if implemented, will give disadvantaged young people in this country more of the kind of opportunities that have helped me.
Michael de Giorgio CSJ Sport Working Group Chairman
Michael is the co-founder of the Greenhouse Schools Project. He continues to be involved full time in its development. Greenhouse was founded in 2002 and aims to transform the lives of young people aged 11 to 16 by engaging them in sports and performing arts. Projects currently take place in over 30 schools and seven community clubs.
John Amaechi is a New York Times best-selling author, psychologist and former NBA basketball player. He is a senior fellow at the Applied Centre for Emotional Literacy, Learning and Research.
Fred is a Professor and Director of Researchat the University of Stirling and previously at the University of Edinburgh For more than 30 years Fred has worked and researched with practitioners in the leisure industries, in particular in sports-related contexts. His expertise in the areas of monitoring and evaluation and organisational development, in particular for sport-for-development organisations, is complemented by his experience of working with such organisations from different cultures around the world, including in India, Africa and Brazil. He also has a wealth of UK experience, including eight years as chair of the board of Edinburgh Leisure, a leisure trust delivering sport and recreation services on behalf of Edinburgh City Council.
Clare is the Regional Manager for Positive Futures (North West), and founder of the nationally recognised Positive Futures social enterprise in Liverpool. She delivers advice and services to the private, voluntary and public sectors, and is a keen adventure sports participant.
Dr Damian Hatton
In August 2001 Damian founded Street League, a leading Sport for social change programme, working with severely disadvantaged youths and adults across the UK. He originally trained as a medical doctor at University College London Hospital, practising in both the UK and Australia for five years. It was through Damian’s daily contact with the homeless and individuals suffering from drug and alcohol addiction that he nurtured both the ideology and practical application of sporting interventions to successfully address a range of inter-related social issues including health problems, crime, social exclusion, low educational attainment and long term unemployment. Damian stepped down from the CEO position at Street League in midafter nine years at the helm to pursue an exciting dual role. Damian is currently the UK Director for streetfootballworld, helping scale up their work across the globe and secondly plays a Senior Advisor role for Aqumen Social Technologies, a social enterprise he co-founded in 2006 that offers cutting edge technology solutions for non-profits to performance manage their organisations and measure and report on their social return on investment.
Professor Barrie Houlihan
Barrie Houlihan is Professor of Sport Policy in the Institute of Sport and Leisure Policy at Loughborough University, UK. He has been involved in teaching and researching sport for over twenty years. His research interests include the domestic and international policy processes for sport. He has a particular interest in sports development, the diplomatic use of sport, and drug abuse by athletes.
In addition to his work as a teacher and researcher, Barrie Houlihan has undertaken consultancy projects for various UK government departments, UK Sport, Sport England, the Council of Europe, UNESCO and the European Union. He has chaired, and been a member of, various working groups in the sports councils. He is the editor in chief of the International Journal of Sport Policy and Politics and an Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences.
In 2006 Simon founded the London Boxing Academy Community Project which successfully re-integrates excluded teenagers into mainstream society. In 2010, the Academy expanded
Matthew Patten is Chief Executive of The Lord’s Taverners, one of the UK’s leading youth sports and disability charities, whose charitable mission is to enhance the prospects of disadvantaged and disabled young people using cricket and other forms of sport and recreation to engage with them.
He has over 20 years’ senior management and sports marketing experience in the UK and worldwide in the private, public and third sectors.