SportsAid's partners are vital to the success of young athletes throughout Great Britain. Create a unique partnership of your own and build a long-lasting relationship with the brightest sporting prospects.
SportsAid has a wide variety of existing partnerships which play a key role in supporting the development of the next generation of British sporting heroes. There are many ways for your organisation to get involved with the charity. Each partnership is unique, built entirely around your priorities, but has a shared goal of helping young people to succeed in sport.
SportsAid's commercial partners range from local businesses to companies such as Royal Bank of Canada, the Nottingham Building Society and myLotto24. Many of these partnerships see the athletes benefiting from additional support, particularly through educational workshops and buddy schemes, to broaden their skillset and encourage further personal development.
The charity also works with many local authorities and County Sports Partnerships (CSPs) across the country to decide which athletes to support in their region. A number of trusts and charitable funds partner with SportsAid to make a difference to young people - in certain cases this can focus on a specific area, such as disability sports, depending on their goals.
Other partners like to work together to put on local fundraising events, such as lunch clubs, where they present cheques to athletes from their area. SportsAid is also a popular 'chosen charity', especially during an Olympic and Paralympic year, because sport has so many connections to the world of business and can be a great motivating factor for staff.
Each partnership is unique but what every partner gets is exclusive access to the athletes they are supporting. You could start at any point during the year and there is no minimum number of athletes. The typical SportsAid award they receive is £1,000 a year. You could do the following after the sports have nominated their athletes to SportsAid in the autumn:
SportsAid delivers educational and interactive workshops to support the development of young talented athletes and increase their knowledge base as they progress in their sporting careers. The workshops provide a unique opportunity for partners to engage with staff, including senior management, build relationships with athletes and their parents/guardian, and gather reams of exciting content for media output for now and the future.
The workshop model has been devised from feedback received from athletes and SportsAid always looks to ensure the partner's objectives are fulfilled. They are typically a day long and see athletes and parents split into groups as they rotate around sessions focusing on areas such as nutrition, media and social media, presentation skills, sports psychology, performance lifestyle management and creating sponsorship opportunities.
Each group of athletes are accompanied by a mentor who offers insight and advice based on their own experiences throughout their career. The mentors tend to be SportsAid ambassadors, many of which have been previous beneficiaries of the charity's support, with the likes of Keri-anne Payne, Leon Taylor, Elise Christie, Etienne Stott, Maggie Alphonsi, Kelly Sotherton, David Flatman and Courtney Tulloch all sharing their expertise.
SportsAid offers each partner the opportunity to provide extra support to athletes by setting up a buddy scheme with their staff. Each buddy will get to know their individual athlete, as well as their family, and feedback good news and updates to their work team and the whole of the organisation. The buddy can communicate with the athlete via email and telephone and may even wish to engage further by watching the athlete train or compete.
Both the buddy and athlete can benefit from learning from one another throughout this process as each can share their skills and experience. There is a lot of crossover in the world of sport and work and within both fields individuals are on their journey to becoming a top performer. These shared skills include including goal setting, overcoming adversity, discipline, motivation, focus, perseverance, hard work and pulling together as a team.
There are many fundraising opportunities for partners and their staff to show their support for the next generation of athletes through SportsAid. Each year, the charity has guaranteed places for the Virgin Money London Marathon, Prudential RideLondon and the Simplyhealth Great North Run. SportsAid offers partners the chance to secure places for these events - all of which can be notoriously difficult to achieve a spot through the ballot process!
Partners may also choose to nominate SportsAid as their chosen charity for their own fundraising events. They can look to involve the charity's alumni, as well as currently supported athletes, to raise the profile of the event and encourage further donations. SportsAid Week, which takes place at the end of September each year, acts as an annual focal point for partners to run fundraising activities with their staff and clients.