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8 Sep 2022 | 10:10

Youth Charter has been unveiled as a host partner for the Sport for Development Coalition’s next ‘Town Hall’ session which will take place in Birmingham in November and focus on the contribution of sport for development to supporting and sustaining the social impact and legacy of major events in the UK. 

The Coalition’s popular Town Halls are designed to provide informal opportunities for a selection of the 250 organisations and networks who make up the network to engage on important issues in the sector, and drive the Coalition’s collective response to them. 

Four sessions have been held over the past year, and the fifth will be held on Tuesday 8th November (1000-1230) exactly three months on from the close of the Commonwealth Games so that local and national stakeholders can convene in Birmingham to check and challenge what actions are or aren’t being implemented, or should be introduced to sustain the positive social impact of the event, which saw athletes from 72 nations compete across the West Midlands region between July 28 and August 8.

Town Hall

Details for the Town Hall are as follows: 

The legacy of hosting international events has been a hot topic in a year which has seen England stage the Women’s Euros in football, the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and the Rugby League World Cup (postponed from 2021 because of Covid-19) which takes place between October 15 and November 19. July also marked 10 years since London staged the 2012 Olympics, with Coalition Board member Ali Oliver MBE, the Chief Executive of Youth Sport Trust, remarking that “the discussion about legacy needs to go deeper” and pointing towards the reduction of PE hours in schools since 2012. Examining the intersection of sport and society, including ‘Closing the gap in education and development’, is a key part of the Coalition’s #OpenGoal framework which aims to showcase how targeted sport-based interventions can help to save public money because of the return on investment they provide across multiple outcome areas and policy priorities.

The charity Youth Charter, which will support the Town Hall in Birmingham, provides sport, art, cultural and digital activity to develop the mental, physical and emotional resilience and life-skills of young people and in particular the disadvantaged and disaffected in communities where anti-social, gang-related activity and extremism is experienced.

Its founder and Chair Geoff Thompson said: “This Town Hall meeting comes at an important time in the ongoing Games legacy effort in providing the mental, physical and emotional health and wellbeing of young people of Birmingham, the West Midlands and the Commonwealth. The Youth Charter’s #Call2Action was recently launched at Birmingham City University and this event is another important step in engaging the very young people and communities, primarily from disaffected and disadvantaged communities to provide hope and opportunity through our #legacyopportunity4all.” 

COMMUNITIES

Hitesh Patel, Executive Director for the Coalition, said: “Following on from the success of the Games in Birmingham, the Coalition is pleased to announce that we will be convening with network members and experts from the field to examine the ongoing social impact of the event on people and communities across the region, and indeed further afield when it comes to future events that are being staged in the UK.” 

Watch and read about previous Town Halls: 

At the Town Hall sessions speakers and experts, practitioners and people with lived experience contribute to panel sessions, and there are open-floor discussions and break-out sessions, with comments, insights and resources distributed to attendees following the event. Members lead on actions agreed at the session, and contribute to the ‘collective action’ of the Coalition as it gathers momentum. 

To watch a live stream of the Town Hall, register here.