Case Studies

Our specialist partner London Thunder Basketball Club offers a safe ‘playground’ for young people in the ethnically diverse area of Lewisham, south-east London.

Levelling the Playing Field has sparked a unique unification of services in Newport which offers life-changing support for children through sport and physical activity. 

TheCoventry Youth Partnership (CYP) is a collective of community and statutory organisations who work together to achieve the best possible outcomes for young people in the city.

When assessing success, it’s entirely understandable that Levelling the Playing Field specialist partners will focus on their impact on participants. But what about staff?

As part of our 'Monitoring and Evaluation' month, we speak to third-sector M&E expert Matt Stevenson-Dodd for some wisdom on measuring and recording impact.

As part of our ‘monitoring and evaluation’ theme in May, we speak to Ben Eckett who is introducing a fascinating new system to measure the impact of his programmes at our specialist partners Gloves Not Gunz and Urban Yogis.

Ten participants from our specialist partners Sports Key in Birmingham have been selected for the Commonwealth Games Gen22 programme to gain confidence and boost their employability.

Our strategic partners Yorkshire Sport Foundation have set up the Active Burngreave Training Hub to share local expertise, upskill workforces and empower organisations delivering sport and physical activity in the community.

Four Sheffield-based Levelling the Playing Field specialist partners – ...

Levelling the Playing Field has completed a “hugely positive” initial phase of delivery with children inside HMP Werrington via our specialist partners Sharks Community Trust.

Manpreet Kaur Saini from our specialist partners Wolverhampton Wrestling Club has achieved a Bollywood-inspired dream after being selected as a baton bearer at this summer’s Commonwealth Games.

We sit down with Arnaud and Raya, who deliver Levelling the Playing Field sessions at our specialist partners Palace for Life Foundation, to discuss their impact on ethnically diverse children and their community.

As part of our support for the Sport for Development Coalition’s #OpenGoal campaign – which coincides with International Day of Sport for Development and Peace - we profile the journey of Kameron from our specialist partners InPower Academy.

The Alliance of Sport’s successful application for Sport England Tackling Inequalities Funding (TIF) has given more children in Croydon access to physical activity, support, safety and routine - thanks to LtPF specialist partners Gloves Not Gunz.

Gloves Not Gunz use boxing, jiu-jitsu, fitness and yoga to engage and divert children from crime, anti-social behaviour, exclusion from education and the care system. Bringing parents on board with their processes has a huge influence on the positive impact they make on young people.

Levelling the Playing Field is delighted to welcome Pat Benson Boxing Academy as a new specialist partner in the West Midlands.

Named after its founder in the early 1960s, Pat Benson Boxing Academy runs a variety of sport and education programmes to build young people’s physical and mental health, confidence, resilience and

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Martine Smith’s job title at Maindee Primary School in Newport may be ‘Equity Lead’ but her influence on children and families in her local community goes way, way deeper than that.

Martine is a highly respected figure amongst the hugely ethnically diverse population surrounding the school (where 46 different languages are spoken

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Everybody knows Safiya Saeed in the Sheffield community of Burngreave. She is deeply embedded and highly respected in the area – and that is key to her impact on children at the organisation she founded, Reach Up Youth....

Street Soccer London have been able to develop deeper relationships with their participants by being part of the Levelling the Playing Field network and receiving Sport England’s Tackling Inequalities Funding.

That’s the opinion of Street Soccer London coordinator Jack Badu, who together with manager Craig McManus and other staff has

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Working very closely with families in his community of Burngreave in Sheffield enables Imran Ali to maximise the positive impact he has on children in his care.

Imran manages Ellesmere Youth

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Positive Youth Foundation have offered vital post-lockdown support to children in ethnically diverse areas of Coventry thanks to support from Levelling the Playing Field and the Tackling Inequalities Fund.

Rotherham United Community Sports Trust say Levelling the Playing Field and Sport England’s Tackling Inequalities Fund have been “massive” in enabling them to engage with local ethnically diverse communities.

As part of Levelling the Playing Field’s ‘peer research’ month, we visit the Peer Action Collective who ask other young people about their experiences of youth violence and use their findings to create change in their local communities.

Trust is a fundamental factor in effective safeguarding. Having a close relationship with a trusted adult gives children the confidence to share any issues and concerns as well as a solid support mechanism to thrive and succeed.

Levelling the Playing Field has linked with a host of partners in Newport to find new ways of supporting children in the ethnically diverse area of Maindee through sport and physical activity.

Tom McIntosh, Operations Director at Levelling the Playing Field’s strategic partners Sport Birmingham, gives his view on the attributes any coach or youth worker must have when it comes to safeguarding. 

As part of our focus on safeguarding throughout January, we asked Nikki Miles what the process looks like at our specialist partners Positive Youth Foundation in Coventry.

As part of our focus on safeguarding throughout January, we find out how London Sport use the voices and opinions of young people to ensure policy converts into good practice on the front line.

Read how safeguarding of individuals, families and the community runs through the whole philosophy of Levelling the Playing Field's specialist partners NPV Football Development in Wolverhampton.

We asked our specialist partners Millwall in the Community how their Levelling the Playing Field football sessions achieve positive outcomes for ethnically diverse children in their South London community.

As part of our Sport for Development theme, we asked specialist partners Sporting Elite how their Levelling the Playing Field football sessions achieve positive outcomes for ethnically diverse children in their community. 

As part of our 'Sport for Development' month, we asked our specialist partners Fight 4 Change how they use boxing and martial arts to give local young people positive experiences and opportunities - both in the ring and in life. 

We sit down with Arnaud and Raya, who deliver Levelling the Playing Field sessions at our specialist partners Palace for Life Foundation, to discuss their impact on ethnically diverse children and their community.

As part of our 'Sport for Development Month', we pick the brains of our specialist partners RUCST on how they use 'the power of the badge' to engage ethnically diverse children and make their community a safer place.

As part of Levelling the Playing Field’s ‘Sport for Development Month’ in December, we hear from our specialist partners Street Soccer London on how they guide young players from the pitch towards progress in many different areas of their lives.

Maindee Primary School, situated in a hugely multicultural area of Newport, has connected with a web of local partners to positively impact ethnically diverse children in their care.

Levelling the Playing Field is delighted to offer CEOs, project leaders and key management staff in our network of specialist delivery partners the opportunity to take part in a bespoke leadership skills programme.

New apprentice Geri Leigh Branigan is proud to be guiding and supporting ethnically diverse children at InPower in Wolverhampton – because she knows herself how vital sport and role models can be.

Sharks Community Trust are the latest partners to join Levelling the Playing Field to engage and support young people in custody and post-release through sport and physical activity.

Big Brother Burngreave, our LtPF specialist partners in Sheffield, have a unique approach to nurturing young leaders. As part of our 'Leadership Month, we met Tyrone and Tes to see how it's changed their lives.

As part of Levelling the Playing Field’s ‘Leadership Month’ we are privileged to meet Neeco and Gulraj, two outstanding young leaders from our specialist partners InPower in Wolverhampton.

Levelling the Playing Field is linking up our local delivery partners in London with Centre of Change Project to provide specialist counselling and mentoring to their young people.

Aptitude Youth, our local delivery partners in Coventry, are training up 10 young people as qualified sports leaders using funding from Levelling the Playing Field.

Emmanuel joined our local delivery partners Aptitude Youth three years ago after arriving in Coventry from Ghana via Italy. He says the staff and his fellow beneficiaries have become “like a second family”.

For Ayathola, Sinokuhle, Keren, Chloe and Exaucee, attending Levelling the Playing Field sessions run by Young Minds Together in Rotherham is more than a weekly dance class; it’s a sisterhood that helps them overcome many barriers

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Former Olympic athlete Marilyn Okoro is to lead sport and physical activity sessions with young people in custody as part of a new Levelling the Playing Field partnership. 

Tamsir Gaye is just starting out as a mentor for our delivery partner Positive Youth Foundation in Coventry - but he has already found a creative way to get his message across to young people.

As part of Levelling the Playing Field’s ‘Youth Voice’ month, we visited Newport Live's Friday night LtPF session in the suburb of Pillgwenlly and asked participants Kareem, Hilmee and Raheed about the project's impact on their lives.

The initials in PKC Football Academy stand for ‘Prevent Knife Crime’ - but the aims of our new Levelling the Playing Field delivery partners extend even further beyond that.

As part of Levelling the Playing Field’s ‘Youth Voice’ month, we spoke to Uzo Anosike, a participant at our delivery partners Street Soccer London. The budding young sports journalist told us the impact the organisation has had on his life since he first attended their Levelling the Playing Field session last year.

Tamsir Gaye is just starting out as a mentor for our delivery partner Positive Youth Foundation in Coventry - but he has already found a creative way to get his message across to young people.

Sports Key, our local delivery partners in Birmingham, feel they benefited from the ‘thinking time’ given to them by Covid-19 and have re-emerged stronger post-lockdown.

Our local delivery partner Unity Gym Project in Sheffield offers so much more than an ordinary city-centre gym. It’s a community where young people can find support, motivation and hope.

The pandemic has hit under-served communities particularly hard and our local delivery partners in South Yorkshire have worked tirelessly to support local children who have been severely impacted.

Our local delivery partners Fight 4 Change have emerged stronger from the pandemic by moulding their programmes to meet the increased needs of young people.

The pandemic has led to a big rise in vulnerability among young people and support services have had to be nimble and innovative to even come close to meeting these acute needs.

The pandemic has led to a big rise in vulnerability among young people and support services have had to be nimble and innovative to even come close to meeting these acute needs.

Levelling the Playing Field is to give children inside HMP/YOI Wetherby the opportunity to learn climbing both during their jail terms and as part of their resettlement into the community.

Support from youth services has never been more needed than in the last 18 months, but Covid restrictions and dwindling resources have made it tough to meet demand. Money from Sport England’s Tackling Inequalities Fund (TIF) has therefore been a lifeline for many of Levelling the Playing Field’s local delivery

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Levelling the Playing Field partners and Gwent Police have joined forces to stage the Community Cohesion Cup - breaking down barriers and building trust between ethnic communities and local services.

Young refugees and asylum seekers often arrive in Newport having experienced conflict and trauma in their homelands, so when the Sanctuary project engages them in sport and physical activity, it's to achieve two very simple outcomes: to get them “sweaty and smiling”.

Palace for Life Foundation have joined Levelling the Playing Field as a local delivery partner and Angel O’Dwyer, who will be working on the project, has all the makings of a perfect role model for our participants.

Millwall Community Trust are the latest addition to our Local Delivery Partners in London. They have been using sport to achieve positive social impact in their local community for over 35 years.

Our local delivery partners Wolverhampton Wrestling Club have launched a project to engage autistic children in sport and physical activity.

Participants at Levelling the Playing Field sessions run by Aptitude Youth, our local delivery partners in Coventry, are set to become leaders for the next generation....

Warwickshire Cricket Board have joined Levelling the Playing Field as a Local Delivery Partner – and their projects targeting specific communities are set to enrich our evidence base.

Exiles Together is a brilliant partnership between Newport County FC and the ethnically diverse community right on the club’s doorstep. Their activities promote diversity, inclusion and diversion from crime through the power of sport.

Tess Awoke says being part of an ethnically and culturally diverse ‘brotherhood’ at Big Brother Burngreave in Sheffield has helped give him a sense of identity, connection and purpose.

We are proud to have Sithule Mguni as a Local Delivery Partner on Levelling the Playing Field. Her organisation, Young Minds Together, uses performing arts to empower girls from ethnically diverse communities in Rotherham to overcome many barriers in life.

Young people at Fight 4 Change’s Levelling the Playing Field sessions on Wednesday nights in Lambeth will receive coaching, guidance and support from the very best in the game.

Newport Aces are the latest Local Delivery Partner to join Levelling the Playing Field in Gwent. Their founder, Asa Waite, has a great phrase to sum up the issues his community basketball club tries to tackle with children in the area.

Mentoring has had a profound effect on Keanna Arnett’s life – and Levelling the Playing Field’s support for mentors is set to spread that positive impact across our four delivery areas.

London Thunder have a reputation for producing elite-level basketball players, but their community sessions - open to all young people in the culturally diverse borough of Lewisham - are the club's beating heart.

Youth empowerment and social cohesion are the aims of Community Youth Project in Newport, which has become the first organisation in Wales to join Levelling the Playing Field as a local delivery partner.

There can be few more ethnically diverse environments than that of Wolverhampton Wrestling Club. Situated in a Sikh gurdwara, it is melting pot of religions, nationalities, backgrounds, ages and sporting abilities. Once through the door, all are treated as equals. 

Children so often find themselves labelled these days: ‘socially excluded’, ‘at risk’ or ‘disadvantaged’. One of Street Soccer London’s philosophies is that these tags are left at the door.

Self-expression and social cohesion are the buzz words at Young Minds Together in Rotherham where girls from diverse local communities enjoy dance, acting, singing and poetry.

Amy Cooper’s childhood home in Sheffield had an ‘open door’ to local youngsters who needed shelter and support. When her father Mick died of leukemia in 2012, his family were determined to continue his ethos of caring for disadvantaged young people. OnBoard skatepark is his legacy.

“I just love what I do,” says Imran Ali from the Ellesmere Youth Project. “As a kid, I went to the same youth club as I’m standing in right now. Even if I become a millionaire tomorrow, there’s no way I’ll be leaving.”

Sky Blues in the Community, the charity arm of Coventry City FC, exemplify the ways that collaboration between sport and criminal justice can bring positive outcomes for children.

These are tough times in Sheffield. At the time of writing, Tier 3 lockdown measures are in place and it’s October half-term, with holiday hunger a major topic of conversation.

Every Friday night at Goals five-a-side centre in Nechells, inner-city Birmingham, up to 90 young males aged 14-19 gather to play football. In-between matches, Sporting Elite director Seb Hamilton and his staff mingle and chat.

Frustrated and fearful at the lack of opportunities for children in her community back in 2017, Tara Foster wanted to bring back the “lost art” of youth work to help. Aptitude, in the deprived Radford area of Coventry, was the result – and its impact has been phenomenal.

A new organisation which uses yoga to engage and divert children away from crime, gangs and anti-social behaviour is joining the Levelling the Playing Field project as a local delivery partner.

Changing mindsets and building resilience are the cornerstones of the InPower Academy in Wolverhampton, which uses martial arts to engage children who are at-risk of entering, or already involved with, the Youth Justice System.

Sports Key are a valuable addition to Levelling the Playing Field’s network of Local Delivery Partners in the West Midlands. They use sport as a ‘magnet’ to attract people from their largely disadvantaged but hugely diverse local community, helping to make it more active, healthy and cohesive. 

Sport 4 Life use sport as a ‘hook’ to engage young people in Birmingham and guide them towards sustained education, employment or training. Last year, 79% of their beneficiaries were from BAME backgrounds and 15-20% have an offending history. For Levelling the Playing Field, they’re a gift-wrapped delivery partner. 

The Positive Youth Foundation has built such an esteemed reputation for supporting young people's needs over the last 23 years that the decision to approach them to be a Local Delivery Partner for Levelling the Playing Field was a no-brainer.

Joe Jackson, founder of NPV Football Development, has worked with at-risk young people from diverse backgrounds in Wolverhampton for the last 22 years. His organisation's reputation and vast experience make it an ideal Local Delivery Partner for Levelling the Playing Field. Find out more about their frontline work.

In the underprivileged Sheffield area of Burngreave, young men and women wearing distinctive blue, red, grey and black t-shirts are recognised on every street corner. But this is no ordinary urban gang.

Newport Live's highly-regarded Positive Futures initiative has come on board as LtPF's Local Strategic Partner in Gwent. Find out all about their award-winning and innovative work with young people and how they plan to support the area's at-risk BAME young people through our project.

Sport Birmingham is an independent charity that uses the power of sport and physical activity to improve lives. We're delighted to have them on board as a Local Strategic Partner and spoke to Operations Director, Tom McIntosh, about our forthcoming partnership. 

The Yorkshire Sport Foundation is Levelling the Playing Field's Local Strategic Partner in South Yorkshire. We hope to help them build on their exemplary work with local sport-based projects that support young people from BAME communities.

London Sport's ambition is to make London the most active city in the world. As one of LtPF's Local Strategic Partners, we will work with them to engage and energise at-risk young people from minority backgrounds across the capital. Read on to

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