Nottingham City Council has secured a Sport England grant of £332,100 which aims to increase the physical activity levels of disabled people across the city.
Disability sport is highly important to the city which has a stated ambition to ‘make Nottingham the fastest growing city for disability sports participation in the UK’. Developing disability sport is a significant priority in the city’s Sport and Physical Activity Strategy launched in the summer of 2015.
The two and a half year Disability Sport Insight and Participation Partnership will start in December 2016.
Currently 40% of Nottingham Citizens take part in 30 minutes of physical activity a week but this is much lower for those with a disability or limiting illness at only 17.2%. In the city, 55,382 (18%) residents are known to have a disability or limiting illness.
The focus for the new partnership is tackling inactivity by engaging disabled people and organisations, encouraging them to help shape Nottingham City’s offer to meet their needs and support them to engage in more physical activity.
This partnership takes a different approach with an initial six months of consultation and research. Sport England’s national disability insight recognises that disabled people are more likely to engage through a trusted person/organisation so embracing partner organisations is seen as a logical starting point.
Nottingham City Council will be working with a range of partners who are trusted organisations for disabled people. The partnership will focus on listening and learning, allowing people to shape and define their own offer around participation – building a customer centred approach.
Key strategic and delivery partners will include Nottingham Community and Voluntary Service (NCVS) which will establish a Disability Sport and Physical Activity Network engaging with a cross sector of disability and health related organisations.
The network will focus on understanding the previous experiences and barriers for disabled people accessing sport activity and will arrange site visits for individuals and groups to assess Nottingham City leisure centres. This information will then be used to help develop the physical activity offer available.
Other partners include: Nottingham City Homes, the City’s Adult Social Care Team, Age Friendly Nottingham, National Governing Bodies of Sport and accreditation partners DEAFinitely Inclusive and CREDAbility
Phil Smith, Director of Sport at Sport England said: “Thanks to National Lottery funding, the new partnership announced today will start a frank conversation about the reasons why disabled people are less likely to be active. There are lots of reasons why a person may opt out of sport and physical activity, and the strength of this partnership is that it brings together community sports providers and disabled people to discuss these reasons and find new ways to increase participation levels. It’s vital that everyone regardless of age, gender or ability feels able to be active in the best way that suits them, and I commend Nottingham City Council for putting its commitment to disability sport into action. The outcomes of this venture will benefit not just disabled people in Nottingham but also help inform us on how we can better offer disability sport across the country.”
Cllr Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said: “We have spent £40 million pounds over the last ten years transforming the city’s leisure facilities and they are now some of the best in the country, with a focus on ease of access. We want to work together with disabled people, allowing users and non-users to contribute to and benefit from the sport, leisure, cultural and social offers our services and facilities can offer.”
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Notes to editors
Organisations or individuals interested in getting involved in the partnership should contact NCVS’s Support Officer. Tel: 0115 9349550 or email firstname.lastname@example.org