The Football Foundation's community sports partnership with Barclays has been awarded the prestigious ' Sponsorship / Partnership of the Year' award at the inaugural Football Business Awards.
Barclays Spaces for Sports (BS4S) is the UK’s largest ever sports-based Corporate Social Responsibility Programme and has developed 200 multi-sports sites in disadvantaged communities right across the country.
These facilities are used by over 53,000 people every week with participation, not sporting excellence, being the key ethos. Barclays has committed more than £37 million to BS4S since its inception, along with a further £30m donated and raised by the Football Foundation, the UK's largest sports charity.
Paul Thorogood, Chief Executive of the Football Foundation, said: “Barclays Spaces for Sports has provided the model and set the standard for sports CSR programmes. It has seen more than 200 multi-sport facilities developed in some of most the deprived parts of the country, so I am delighted that it has been recognised at the inaugural Football Business Awards.
“The sites that the BS4S scheme has built not only enable more people to become active and healthy, they have also regenerated communities and have become important venues for people of all ages and backgrounds to gain qualifications and employment.
“It is fitting that BS4S should win this particular award because the enduring success of BS4S has been built on very strong personal relationships, a strong joint team ethic and a shared belief that BS4S is doing so much to provide access to sport in deprived communities.
"I want to pay tribute to our partner, Barclays, as well as everyone who has helped to deliver the BS4S programme since it was launched in 2004. I would also like to thank the thousands of volunteers that regularly give up their time at the BS4S sites to run teams and community projects for the benefit of their local areas. Without these inspirational individuals, grassroots sports simply could not take place."
The award, presented at Chelsea's Stamford Bridge stadium last week, is the sixth award that the BS4S programme has picked up.
Previous awards include the 'Community Programme Award' at the Sport Industry Awards and the ‘Best Grass Roots Sports Sponsorship’ at the Hollis Sponsorship Awards.
From everyone here at Club Website, congratulations to our friends at the Football Foundation and everyone involved in Barclays Spaces for Sports.
To find out more about BS4S visit the Football Foundation website.