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Students encouraged to give sport a go

James Hair in the college's new gym

Sunderland College has been awarded £90,000 to launch a new project aimed at encouraging 14 to 25-year-olds to get active.

The college’s Give it a Go scheme will see young people offered the opportunity to take up a range of sporting activities for free.

Sunderland College was awarded £90,000 by Sport England out of its Further Education Activation Fund to boost the number of students taking part in sport.

The college is part-funding the three-year project and it has appointed sports development officer James Hair to lead the programme of activities.

He said: “The Give it a Go project is vitally important as one of the country’s health and fitness priorities is to stop the drop off in sports and physical activity participation when young people leave school. This funding allows Sunderland College to put on a wide range of activities that will excite and engage young people during their time at college.

“Sport can make a huge difference to an individual’s physical and mental wellbeing, and also helps students to develop skills that they can utilise in their future studies and careers.

“I would like to thank Sport England for providing us with this funding as it will enable us to make a huge impact on the lives of our wider student body.”

Students will be offered the chance to take part in sports including netball, basketball, badminton, trampolining and cycling as well as health and fitness classes such as circuit training and SkinnyPigs fitness sessions.

The college has already invested in equipment for the project including two trampolines and a bike trailer, and funding will also be used to train staff in coaching.

The majority of the activities will be delivered at the college’s brand new state-of-the-art Sports building at Bede Campus, which features a multi-use sports hall, sports science performance lab, sports massage treatment areas, exercise studio and a fully equipped £100,000 fitness suite.

James added:  “The new sports facilities are phenomenal and are certainly among the best in the country. Staff and students are very enthusiastic about the facilities and we have already received excellent feedback.”

The Give it a Go project will complement the college’s other sporting provision which includes a comprehensive sports-related curriculum and development centres for elite men and women footballers, rugby players, swimmers and coaches.

In addition to this project, the college will continue to offer students other activity options including kayaking, climbing, skiing, archery and martial arts which are financially supported by Sport England’s Sportivate fund.

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