Opening Doors to Great Futures


The National Association of Boys & Girls Clubs (NABGC) have just completed their Youth Accelerator programme and the results have been amazing.

Just prior to lockdown in March 2020, the NABGC were awarded £200,000 by the DCMS via Sport England to deliver a range of activities and opportunities for young people across their network.

The aims of the funding were:

  • To deliver increased positive activities for young people
  • That activities should meet one of five core outcomes for young people; 1) that they are skilled and equipped to learn, 2) that they are safe and confident in their future, 3) that they have positive health and wellbeing, 4) that they are active members of their community and 5) that they are treated fairly and equally

Following feedback from those NABGC members that were involved in the project we are pleased to say that

  • Reached 4,346 young people took part in the activities delivered through the programme
  • Approximately 752 sessions delivered thanks to the funding
  • 91 local youth clubs involved
  • 11 county member organisations taking part
  • 3 residentials delivered

These activities have been delivered in the middle of and in the wake of a very difficult 18-months due to COVID and all its associated restrictions.

NABGC’s Member organisations have worked extremely hard to successfully deliver a diverse range of activities, meaning that young people have had somewhere to go and something positive to do during and after lockdown.

There have been a very diverse range of activities delivered including

  • Sports such as Football, Cricket, Table Tennis, Dodgeball, Badminton, Boxing, Basketball and more.
  • Outdoor Activities including Climbing, Hiking, Kayaking and Canoeing
  • Other activities like Quad-Biking, Tall Ships experiences, High Ropes Courses, Archery and more
  • The funds have also allowed physical activities to be delivered at new youth clubs that were being set up
  • Clubs that were running successfully have been enhanced by providing sports coaches and training to volunteers
  • Some funds contributed to holiday activity programmes
  • As alluded to above, some funds supported residential activities
  • In other cases, capital items have been purchased to support ongoing activities

And it is clear that young people and staff have appreciated the opportunities that have been made available. Here are some comments from across the country

After the extended lockdown period one young person commented that the activities made available has been a huge boost for their emotional wellbeing, they said “This gave me the opportunity to get away from things and have fun, it was a huge peak for my mental health!”

Another commented, “After a long year of lockdown, my mental health was at an all-time low. Going away on the residential allowed me to relax and finally see my friends again!

A Club Leader was really pleased that his group could enjoy some activities together after such a long time separated from their friends. He stated, “Outstanding – my team enjoyed the full day and would do it all again. It bonded the team together after such a long time not seeing each other.”

Another Club Leader commented that because of the activities, young people’s confidence was returning. They said, “Watching young people’s confidence increase, the banter between the young people and the instructors. They all had a brilliant time and experience.”

Andy Hamill, National Director of the NABGC said, “We are extremely grateful for this investment provided by the DCMS, via Sport England. We are also incredibly thankful for the support and patience of Sport England, who have been very supportive and accommodating during what has been a very challenging 18-months or so.”

Andy continued, “I am so proud and honoured to be part of an organisation, that has so many committed and hardworking people involved, working to provide much needed services for young people. And II am so pleased to hear that the programme has been such a great success. Hearing of the vast array of activities that been delivered and the numbers of young people that have taken part is just amazing. Even more heartening, are some of the comments we are hearing from young people, staff and volunteers at clubs where the activities have been taking place.”

“A BIG thank you is expressed to all who worked so hard to achieve all of this and successfully delivering this programme.”