Tracey Crouch, Minister for Sport, Tourism and Heritage has launched a consultation paper on behalf of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport asking interested groups to give their views on what more can be done to help use sport to improve many more lives.
Public engagement with sport has changed dramatically since the last sport strategy was published 13 years ago. This consultation reflects the need to develop a new approach mirroring these changes. Sport participation has declined since October 2012, following the London Olympic Games and organisations are encouraged to respond to this consultation to ensure that public funding is targeted at organisations who can who can get people in sport and physical activity.
Sport is an important area of physical activity. Subsequently, the consultation highlights physical activity as a key theme that needs addressing in the new strategy. The paper calls for views on how:
- sport can address the number of people who are physically inactive
- sport and physical activity can play a role in combating obesity, diabetes and other physical health conditions
- sport and physical activity can address mental health problems
- sport and physical activity can be used to prevent and treat the conditions associated with ageing
- to raise awareness of the UK’s Chief Medical Officers physical activity guidelines to ensure that more people are meeting them
- health and other professionals can work together to raise awareness of the benefits of physical activity
- the Government can improve joined up working and identify the key areas of shared responsibility
- the Government can take advantage of links with other organisations and departments to promote physical activity.
The consultation paper asks for views on improving opportunities for children and young people to participate in sport and wish to capture the role that schools, communities, further and higher education play in engaging this population. Additionally comments are welcomed as to how these sectors can work together to maximise the opportunities for children and young people to take part in sport and be physically active.
Eight other key themes are highlighted to capture the headline issues:
- Financial sustainability
- Coaching, workforce and good governance
- Elite and professional sport
- Fairness and equality
- Safety and wellbeing
- International influence and major sporting events.
Responses from the sports sector and interested public groups can be submitted during the consultation period, running from 2nd August until October 2nd. For more information on responding to the paper please see page seven of the document.