Betting and gaming group Flutter UKI is relaunching its flagship ‘Cash4Clubs’ grassroots sports programme – donating £200,000 to community clubs and charities over the rest of the year.
Cash-strapped sporting organisations across the UK and Ireland will be able to bid for grants of £2,000 a time to improve their facilities, purchase new equipment, help fund coaching programmes or to invest in the sustainability of their club.
Since Cash4Clubs was launched in 2008, nearly £5 million has been invested into community sports by Flutter since then through its brands, which include Betfair, Paddy Power, Sky Betting & Gaming and tombola.
During the pandemic, Flutter rebranded the programme ‘Clubs in Crisis’ and donated more than £4 million in business rates relief to help organisations through Covid-19.
Some 1,800 small clubs secured vital funding in this way with the Leeds Powerchair Football Club and the Peterborough-based Special Olympics Swimming Club among the recipients.
Ian Brown, Flutter UKI chief executive, said: “We want to help small sporting clubs to play an even bigger role in their communities so I’m delighted that Cash4Clubs is back.
“Research shows that for every £1 invested in sports, an average of £6 is returned in social value. We are therefore absolutely convinced this programme can make a real difference in the areas that need it most.”
Flutter UKI is working with leading UK charity Sported to deliver the Cash4Clubs programme. Clubs and charities will be invited to apply for grants from October 18.
One hundred bids will be selected for funding by the awards panel, with a particular emphasis this year on clubs in impoverished areas and those aiming to reach under-represented communities.
Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer last month outlined the Government’s goal to make it easier for people to get more physically active. The Department for Culture, Media & Sport wants to see 2.5 million more adults and 1 million more children being classed as active in England by 2030.
While sports activity has recovered from the pandemic, the proportion of the population considered inactive has also gone up. Charities have warned of increasing barriers to sport in deprived areas, such as a limited range of sports on offer and high charges to take part.
Tom Burstow, deputy CEO of Sported, said: “We see people who are increasingly at risk of being unable to access the benefits of sport because of the growing financial challenges faced by grassroots groups. We will ensure that support reaches those most in need and benefits our local communities.”
Stan Belinski, managing director of Trafford Handball Club, who received £2,200 during the pandemic, said: “The money we received helped so much and enabled us to keep delivering what I believe is a fantastic sport to young people.
“I’d urge clubs facing into the uncertain economic climate to take part in this initiative. Getting involved in a club such as ours only helps people feel part of a brilliant community and gets them active too.”
For further information on Cash4Clubs please visit cash-4-clubs.com. The application period runs until the end of December 2023.
About Flutter Entertainment plc
Flutter is the world’s leading online sports betting and iGaming operator with brands in the UK including Betfair, Paddy Power, Sky Betting & Gaming and tombola. A key part of Flutter’s Positive Impact Plan is to Do More in communities and improve the lives of 10 million people through the power of sport by 2030. Flutter UKI employs more than 5,000 staff across the UK and Ireland.
Sported is a charity which delivers expertise, resources and free support to clubs and groups that use sport and physical activity to make a positive impact on communities throughout the UK. It works with almost 3,000 organisations supporting half a million people to overcome barriers in order to reach their full potential.
For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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