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Rugby charity hopes National Lottery funding benefits even more children

Rugby charity Dallaglio RugbyWorks believe additional funding from The National Lottery will help more children in the North East develop physical and mental fitness, alongside career aspirations.

Hundreds of charities and organisations throughout the UK are gearing up to mark the Coronation of King Charles III on 6 May by delivering a range of activities which aim to bring people together or make a lasting positive impact in their communities.

In this Coronation year, Sport England have been looking at two additional areas which reflect His Majesty the King’s personal passions. Via their Small Grants Programme, they have been funding projects that focus on sustainable activity while reducing the impact on the environment, and projects focusing on the development of skills in young people.

This could mean supporting young people through coaching qualifications or relevant sports administration courses or trying new sessions to bring new participants into a club.

To mark the Coronation, Dallaglio RugbyWorks have received Lottery-supported funding from the Sport England Small Grants Programme and will be using their grant to work with Key Stage 3 and 4 pupils across three schools in the County Durham area, looking to improve fitness but more importantly provide new skills and aspirations to the children involved.

“Our programme is broken down into four cornerstones,” said Head of Delivery Phil Hannah.

“Cornerstone one is developing life skills, which we do through rugby-based active learning. Our second cornerstone, raising aspirations, is about helping young people into the world of work.

“The third and fourth cornerstone is mental and physical health and wellbeing. The physical is taken care of through rugby and signposting to other sports clubs in the areas, and we also deliver some mental wellbeing workshops to young people.

“This funding is for a slightly newer area outside where we usually work, and we have a small pot of money to do some sessions in some schools up there.

“It is important. In this instance, it does enable us to work in a slightly different area in the North East and spread our impact. It enables us to work with a few more people than we would have been able to do otherwise. We aspire to do that a lot more.”

The organisation often works with young people from difficult home backgrounds, who may struggle with education or socioeconomic barriers.

And Hannah believes that this extra grant will provide invaluable support to more young people who previously would not have been able to access their services.

He added: “It is a trusted adult relationship, which is a key part of this relationship. None of this is possible without those relationships our coaches build with those young people. They have a lot of different agencies and bodies working with young people.

These young people tend to come from chaotic backgrounds, which is one of the risk factors, so building that solid relationship helps bring about that change with the young people.

“We are not a short-term programme; it is a year-long minimum, and it can take a while to build that trust. That is the main difference we have compared to other organisations.”

Sport England’s Small Grants programme is still open, with the closing date for applications on 30 June 2023. Please visit the Sport England website for more information.

National Lottery players raise more than £30 million a week for arts, education, environment, health, heritage, sport, and voluntary projects across the UK; see the difference it’s making near you at

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