University students will have more opportunities to get into sport thanks to £10 million of National Lottery investment from Sport England’s University Sport Activation Fund. Fifty-four universities across the country will share in the funding to get nearly 180,000 new students playing sport regularly.
Sport England Director of Community Sport, Mike Diaper, said:
We know universities play a vital role in maintaining and growing a student’s love of sport. They can encourage them to continue playing once they’ve left school or help those less sporty discover a new sport. By investing in the 54 universities we’re helping students develop a lifelong sporting habit while they study.
Currently just over half (52 per cent) of higher education students take part in sport at least once a week. The funding will support projects to not only maintain this level of participation but also increase it by trialling new methods of getting students into sport and offering a wider variety of opportunities to keep them playing sport during their time at university. The projects will particularly concentrate on those that do not currently play. It will also help tackle the issue of many young people giving up sport in their late teens and early twenties.
Universities receiving funding include:
Karen Rothery, Chief Executive of British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS), said:
Universities have really risen to the challenge to increase sport participation, firstly through Active Universities, and now through the University Sport Activation Fund. We at BUCS are delighted that our work with Sport England over the past five years has resulted in such a success story, and are confident that we will continue to enhance the student experience through sport in many creative ways throughout the life of the University Sport Activation Fund delivery.
The latest funding for university sport builds on Sport England’s highly successful three year ‘Active Universities’ programme which delivering a 2 per cent rise in the number of students playing sport regularly.