Posted in: General News
Criminal money to benefit Scotland’s sporting legacy
The Scottish Government today announced that £1.5million of CashBack for Communities funding is being awarded to Scottish Sports Futures (SSF).
The funding will be used to build on the legacy of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games and create life changing opportunities through sport for young people across Scotland.
Cashback for Communities takes money from criminals and reinvests it in schemes and projects to benefit communities throughout Scotland and allow them to flourish. Since its inception in 2007, the CashBack for Communities Programme has provided over 1.5 million activities and opportunities for young people
The money is the latest award from the third phase of CashBack funding, which has so far seen an overall commitment of £74m to projects and initiatives across Scotland.
Scottish Sports Futures works with young people most at risk from neighbourhoods which suffer from acute youth disorder and anti-social behaviour. Today’s funding award will enable SSF to continue and expand the delivery of their “Education through Sport” programmes such as Active East, Education Through CashBack, Jump2it and Shell Twilight Basketball for 30,000 young people across Scotland over the next three years.
Cabinet Secretary for Justice Kenny MacAskill made the announcement while meeting Ian Reid, Chief Executive of Scottish Sports Futures and Eddie Fitzpatrick, an active member of SSF’s Active East programme since February 2013 at the Reidvale Neighbourhood Centre in Glasgow’s East End.
Mr MacAskill said: “The curtain may have come down on the best ever Commonwealth Games, but Cashback for Communities will help ensure the legacy of the Commonwealth Games lives on.
“Scottish Sports Futures will bring many benefits to these young people, offering enjoyable and healthy alternatives to crime and anti-social behaviour.
“What is most satisfying for me is that this excellent initiative is being supported by cash seized from the very criminals who seek to bring misery to these young people and their communities.
“I am sure that both Scottish Sports Futures and the memories of the Commonwealth Games will bring hours of enjoyment to communities across Scotland, and may even help create stars of the future.”
In the East End of Glasgow, the award winning Active East programme has recruited 33 local partners and 54 Active Champions to date. This latest phase of CashBack funding is also expected to generate 18,000 volunteer hours over the next three years. Alongside the Education through CashBack training programme this initiative will create the potential for all 32 local authority areas to offer life changing opportunities for more than 17,000 young people across Scotland.
SSF’s Jump2it health and citizenship programme involved over 350 schools and 25,000 pupils over the last three years. The programme educated children from every primary school in the East End of Glasgow on the dangers of alcohol abuse and smoking whilst also promoting the benefits of physical activity and healthy living. The next phase of CashBack for Communities funding will ensure the continuation of this programme as well as helping Shell Twilight Basketball expand to include 15 locations across nine authorities in year one. In consultation with Community Safety partnerships, over 1,400 participants will benefit per annum.
Ian Reid OBE, Chief Executive of Scottish Sports Futures, said: “Scottish Sports Futures’ legacy programmes were in place years before Glasgow 2014 and will continue for years after. However, the Games were a critical catalyst for us and the opportunities they have provided will not be wasted. All of our Active Champions were involved in Games activities which have provided life changing opportunities.
“Continued CashBack funding will help everyone at Scottish Sports Futures in our efforts to build a safer, healthier and stronger Scotland for all.”
One of the many young people across Scotland who has benefited from SSF’s CashBack for Communities funding is Eddie Fitzpatrick, 17, from Dennistoun.
Since becoming involved in the Active East programme, Eddie has completed a variety of training and volunteering opportunities and most recently received funding for his own legacy project over the duration of the Commonwealth Games.
Eddie bought cameras for his local youth project and gave them out to peers to capture their own experiences of the games and their local area. This new funding will offer the opportunity for more young people like Eddie to complete personal development plans as they use sport as a tool to move on to positive destinations.
He said: “The opportunities I’ve had as a young person to lead and volunteer before and during the commonwealth games will stay with me forever. I got to meet Chris Hoy, be interviewed in front of him, go to see events and be part of the closing ceremony.
“I was so nervous to meet the inspirational Chris Hoy so much so I didn’t know what I was saying but he told me to keep up the good work! All because of Active East I was able to meet someone who I’m in awe of.
“The legacy of the games starts here. Other young people can get involved to be inspired to get healthy and active, and Active East can help them realise their own aspirations. They will be inspired to try new things and may even get to meet people they are in awe of as there will still be big sporting events in Glasgow as well as local opportunities. You need people locally to support young people to get further and become a success in their own life.”
Since the inception of the CashBack for Communities in 2007, over £74 million recovered from criminals has been invested in the Cashback Programme to provide free sporting, cultural, youth-work, employability and educational activities for children and young people throughout Scotland..
More information can be found at http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Justice/policies/community-engagement/cashback