Title

Children’s Disability Sport (London: Sutton & Bromley Councils)

Clients

Bromley Council & Sutton Council

Funder

Bromley Council & Sutton Council

Project Summary

Two London Borough councils, Bromley and Sutton, contacted Sport Works in July 2020 to discuss brand new summer sport programmes which catered specifically for children with additional needs.

Recognising that the lockdown throughout Covid-19 had negatively impacted the health, wellbeing of children and families, our brief was to deliver daily activity programmes in each area which provided parents with respite, and children with time to improve fitness, regain confidence and develop new friendships.

An average of 14 children, aged 6-16, attended each day in Bromley, and 12 in Sutton, following referral from social services teams. Activities ranged from Athletics to Circuit Training, Yoga to Dancing between the hours of 10am-3pm.

Approach

Focus on Ability

Every child referred to us is special. And so each and every activity we deliver needs to be different and adaptable. We use a “differentiated” approach in every session to support children with a wide range of additional needs.

Develop Trust

By taking time to understand the challenges and anxieties of the parents and children who come to our sessions, we are better able to develop trust, rapport and deliver a higher quality service.

Work With Quality

Our work is so much more than ‘just’ sport. It is about nurturing confidence, enhancing communication and creating time to reflect. We can only achieve this by employing hard working, qualified and experienced tutors.

Wellbeing Matters

Whilst we are passionate about sport, our interest is not producing the next David Beckham. We simply want to enhance health and wellbeing of both children and their wider family, through fun, healthy group activities.

Aims

  • Enhance children’s emotional wellbeing;
  • Support the wider family unit by reducing anxiety levels of parents/carers post Covid-19;
  • Improve the physical fitness of children, assisting with weight loss where needed;
  • Design group-based activities which develop communication skills;
  • Work with other agencies to create a sustainable offer within the community;
  • Deliver provision at short notice, managing the most suitable time and place for families;

Outcomes

  • 81% of children regarded ‘playing new sports’ and ‘meeting new friends’ as the best part of the programme
  • 91% of parents/carers regarded ‘improved health’ and an opportunity for ‘a rest or time to spend with other children’ to be the greatest programme benefit

Feedback

  • “This is a brilliant and much needed service. We worry [Lilia’s behaviour] can’t be handled, and that brings us so much anxiety for us as parents. I do wish I’d seen tis service earlier” – Allison, Lilia’s Mother, Bromley
  • “Great club, friendly and welcoming staff. We felt very welcome” – Liam’s mother, Sutton
  • “Jamie loves Gymnastics now! The staff have been great, I completely trust them with my boys” – Jamie & Freddie’s mother, Sutton
  • “My daughter has gained new social skills in a nurturing environment. It’s been a great experience after so long at home” – Yasmin’s Father, Bromley

Further Reading

 Read the full case study here