23 October 2018
A picture of Sanctuary awarded National Lottery Funding to help families get active

Sanctuary Housing has been awarded £277,000 of National Lottery funding from Sport England to help low income families get active.

The award has been made through Sport England’s Families Fund which aims to help families have an enjoyable experience of sport and physical activity together, and develop a positive attitude towards being active.

Sanctuary’s award will see the creation of a programme, called What’s Your Game?’, which will support families to design activities for themselves and their communities.

Locally appointed What’s Your Game? facilitators will engage with families, predominantly including five to 10-year-old children, to help them explore how activities and games can be built into everyday life for everyone to enjoy.

Taking place over the next four years, What’s Your Game? will support over 600 families in Sheffield, Hull, Ely, Paignton and Torquay.

What’s Your Game? is the latest partnership between Sanctuary and Sport England. The organisations are currently working on their Love Sport initiative, which is providing activities for individuals aged 14 and over where they can improve their health and wellbeing. It has already reached nearly 2,000 residents.

Through the programme, families will be empowered to adopt an active lifestyle and develop the confidence to take part in activities together as part of quality family time.

Marie-Claire Wattison, Sanctuary’s Head of Community Investment, commented: “This award represents a significant milestone in our partnership with Sport England, having committed a combined investment of over £1 million pounds for programmes designed to help people get active.

“The housing sector can play a key role in mobilising physical activities for people perceived to be ‘hard to reach’, through existing community partnerships and relations with tenants, helping to make a positive impact on people’s lives.

“Following our success with Love Sport, this National Lottery funding will allow us to engage directly with families, in line with Sport England’s objectives, and help them develop an active lifestyle together.”

Sport England’s Actives Lives Survey reveals only 54% of adults with children on a low income are active, compared to 71% of those in higher income groups. A third of adults on low income with children are inactive, doing less than 30 minutes of activity a week.

Sport England has dedicated a £40 million National Lottery funding pot to address this by helping families get active together, and Sanctuary is one of 10 organisations to receive awards in the latest round of investments.

Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport and Civil Society, said: "This will encourage families to get involved in sport together and increase opportunities for people to get active in their local community. I look forward to seeing the positive impact this programme will have on people's health - both physical and mental - and how it can help nurture a life-long love of sport and physical activity."

Mike Diaper, Sport England's Executive Director, added: “Parents have many demands on their time and can lack confidence in how to get active with their children. That’s why Sport England is working hard to make getting active or playing sport with your children an easier choice. It doesn’t matter what people do or how good they are, having fun together is what is important and helps ensure children continue to be active adults.”