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Basketball Opportunities in Nechells
Awarded: £70,177

Region: West Midlands

The City of Birmingham Basketball Club is a voluntary group which offers a selection of basketball activities for children and teenagers in Nechells, Birmingham. The group run a number of competitive teams who train and play in leagues.

The funding was used to increase access to enjoyable social sports activities for young people, making basketball accessible for those who want to play for fun rather than as part of a league. All sessions were free and led by the organisation’s locally recruited, qualified and experienced basketball coaches.

The Club identified barriers to local participation, enabling them to address access issues and improve their promotion of the sport. They delivered a range of sessions for boys and girls at primary and secondary ages which resulted in children from a range of communities coming together to play basketball and creating friendships through the common passion of sport.

New habits that improve long-term health and wellbeing

The sessions enabled participants to access positive physical activities which increased their health and wellbeing. Many of the participants did not previously take part in a physical activity, yet after engaging with the project sessions, many of them chose to attend additional club sessions and also brought their friends with them. This indicated that they enjoyed the activities and were developing new habits that would improve their long-term health and wellbeing.

Additionally, the project has enabled participants from different backgrounds to learn about each other and support one another during the sessions, which has had positive impacts in the local community.

“As an organisation that delivers to diverse communities with a range of social and economic backgrounds, we have always been keen to ensure any barriers to physical activity and participation are removed wherever possible. Our goal within the club is to create a safe environment and family support for young people.

“We delivered twilight time sessions to provide the young people with access to positive diversionary activity in an area of high crime and anti-social behaviour. Nechells Wellbeing Centre, the venue of several of our community sessions, has now developed into a community hub with many more residents now utilising the facilities.

“Many of the young people have now transitioned into other club activities and due to the profile of the project, we have been able to grow our base of participants and have noted a significant increase in participation from both boys and girls locally. We are very grateful to have been given the opportunity to positively impact upon the Nechells area through this project, creating school relationships, developing more links within the local community and establishing basketball as a viable option for young people living nearby.”

Coach Robert Palmer, City of Birmingham Basketball Club