Sports development programmes in areas of social and economic deprivation usually have two broad , interdependent, aims. The development of sports in community and the development of communities through sports.
The main aim of such programmes is sporting inclusion. The desired sporting outcomes of such projects is include: Removal of barriers to sports participation in the community among the general population or target groups, Provision of opportunities to progress and to develop sporting skills and expertise, Provision of opportunities to move from recreational participation to competition or excellence, Training and support of leaders and coaches, Establishment of links between school, sports clubs and the wider community.
The main aim of such programmes is social inclusion. Although our aim to reduce barriers and increase participation, we are also concerned to use sport as a means to an end. Whereas the traditional sports development approach might be regarded as product led and sports centred, such projects will be more ‘needs based’, using sport to address broader aspects of social inclusion and as a means to promote aspects of personal, social and community development. These projects aim to use sport to achieve social outcomes such as improving the fitness and health of specific social groups, Addressing issues of community safety and reducing levels of vandalism and crime, contributing to improved school attendance/educational performance, developing social and technical skills and increasing employability, contributing to community development and regeneration.
"Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the
power to unite people in a way that little else does. Sport can awaken hope where
there was previously only despair. Sport speaks to people in a language they can
- Nelson Mandela, 25 May, 2000