Sports volunteering 'hugely beneficial' for young people
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Sports volunteering 'hugely beneficial' for young people

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We’ve seen the positive impact that social action, sport and physical activity can have on the outcomes for young people
– Kristen Natale

Children and young people who spend time as sports volunteers are "happier and more satisfied with life".

Kristen Natale, Sport England's head of volunteering, said the evidence from social action programmes shows a range of benefits for young people – in addition to them getting physically active.

“We’ve seen the positive impact that social action, sport and physical activity can have on the outcomes for young people,": she said.

"From increased confidence and resilience to reporting improvements in levels of happiness and life satisfaction."

Natale's comments coincided with Sport England announcing increased funding support for three youth volunteering projects.

The Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, Derby County Community Trust and Football Beyond Borders are all receiving around £300,000 to continue their work.

The Laureus Foundation aims to use sport as a tool to help children overcome violence and discrimination, while the Derby County trust engages young people aged 11-21 who are experiencing poor mental health. Football Beyond Borders utilises the popularity of football to re-engage young people with learning.

The grants are being made available via the #iwill Fund, a £50m joint investment from The National Lottery Community Fund and the DCMS to support young people to access high-quality social action opportunities.

“These projects have also empowered young people to have a voice and make a difference to causes they care about in their local area," Natale added.

“These awards are an exciting next stage in our partnership with the #iwill Fund, and together we are looking forward to building on the success of these projects to enable even more young people across England to experience the benefits of youth social action.”

The #iwill Fund supports the aims of the #iwill campaign - a collective effort involving 800 partners from across the public, voluntary, education and business sectors.

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Children and young people who spend time as sports volunteers are "happier and more satisfied with life".
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