Young people in rural Leicestershire had the opportunity to play sport and learn new skills thanks to the Belvoir Bees Junior Cricket Coaching Project run through Belvoir Castle Cricket and Countryside Trust. The group was awarded a £2,000 grant from the Cap fund for its 2015 summer scheme.
Nearly 100 young people took part in the 20-week programme of cricket coaching at four rural venues across Leicestershire and Rutland. The young people had the chance to take part in regular organised physical activity without having to travel too far.
As well as developing their cricket skills, the summer scheme offered the opportunity to learn about teamwork, respect for other players, coaches and officials and the importance of regular exercise.
The Belvoir Bees project also played an important role in the development of local community volunteers. A total of 15 volunteers helped at the venues not only creating a better experience for the children but gaining valuable leadership experience themselves.
Belvoir Bees coach and organiser Neil Atkins said: “The sessions provided a focussed way for local families to meet and get together and become more involved in developing their local community.”
Thomas, who took part in the Belvoir Bees scheme, said: “I really enjoyed playing cricket this year because I have made lots of friends. I have also improved my bowling massively.”
Archie also enjoyed the summer sporting challenge. He said: “You have inspired me to do a lot of cricket [even in winter!!!] It’s one of the best sports ever and I will try and play for England one day.”
One family who benefitted from the scheme said: “Neil gives of his time tirelessly every week through the summer, and he is a fantastic sporting role model for the kids to look up to. We are very lucky to have such folk around.”
If you would like to set up your own fund that works to support charities and groups in the local community, contact Katy Green, Chief Executive at Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation: firstname.lastname@example.org & 0116 2624 916.