It is vitally important that we inspire young people to excel in sport and harness their talent towards future Games. From starting out as a young athlete and progressing through my sport, I know that support through your development years is crucial. I am delighted that through this programme I am able to champion such support for future sporting talent.
Sally Gunnell OBE, Patron, GLL Sport Foundation
The GLL Sport Foundation is an organisation operated by GLL, a charitable social enterprise, helping young athletes. GLL developed the scheme to prevent sporting talent being lost due to financial hardship and the Foundation was officially launched in 2008. The Foundation prides itself on being athlete-focused and offers a support structure to achieve success.
The Foundation also aims to support athletes through the transition phases in their lives and provides access to training and coaching qualifications, as well as work placements and jobs within GLL. Linked to this full circle of support, the athletes play a core role in inspiring and engaging the wider communities in which GLL serve by attending local events.
The GLL Sport Foundation provides young British athletes with financial support and recognition through its partnership with SportsAid. Each athlete receives an annual award of up to £1,250 which contributes towards costs such as travel, accommodation and equipment. This year, the GLL Sport Foundation is helping 80 up-and-coming sports stars.
GLL provides athletes with a training membership enabling access to all its operated venues, thus enabling them to complete strength and conditioning programmes in their gyms, rehab work in the pool and skills practice in an environment local to them for both training and competition preparation. The Foundation also works very closely with sport science providers.
GLL has hosted a number of SportsAid events including two visits from HRH The Duchess of Cambridge to the Copperbox Arena. The Duchess, who is the Patron of SportsAid, attended an athlete workshop in 2014, where young sports stars received guidance on nutrition, performance lifestyle and dealing with the media, and a Commonwealth reception in 2018.
Since the partnership began 11 years ago, the GLL Sport Foundation has enjoyed a number of success stories with Dina Asher-Smith and Lutalo Muhammad both high-profile previous recipients through SportsAid. The current cohort includes sailor Finn Hawkins, who is a Youth Olympic bronze medallist, and double junior world champion rower Calvin Tarczy.
“SportsAid and GLL have given me massive support and I’m grateful for everything they’ve done. They really have helped me an awful lot financially: getting up to and paying training, and making sure that I can get back safely. They’ve been a huge help and I’d have to say that without them a lot of the progress that I’ve had wouldn’t have been the case.”
Dominic Ogbechie is a high jumper who won gold at the European Athletics Under-18s Championships. He received a SportsAid award from the GLL Sport Foundation in 2018.
GLL (2) were crowned champions of the #SupportTheNext Trophy, SportsAid's annual wheelchair basketball competition, as they overcame GLL (1) in a closely-fought final at the Copper Box Arena last Thursday (30 March). The tournament presented SportsAid partners and supporters with the chance to experience the fast-paced and challenging nature of one of the most popular Paralympic sports.
SportsAid has long worked in partnership with GLL, a charitable social enterprise, to select young sports stars for the GLL Sport Foundation (GSF), its athlete support programme. Through the partnership, originally launched in 2008, athletes are supported with financial awards of up to £1,250 and a variety of other benefits made available to them. Since its inception, GLL has helped many high-profile members of SportsAid’s alumni.
SportsAid, the charity supporting the next generation of Olympians and Paralympians, has a long-standing history with the London Marathon. Back in 1984, SportsAid, known then as the Sports Aid Foundation (S.A.F.), was selected as the first official charity of the London Marathon and granted entry places to help with fundraising. 355 runners managed to raise £43,000 for SportsAid - around £216,395 in today’s money!
Here's your chance to experience the fast-paced and challenging nature of wheelchair basketball, one of the most popular Paralympic sports, at the Copper Box Arena!