Annual Review 2022-23
Welcome to our Annual Review – Liz Davidson, Active Partnership Director
2022-23 has been an exciting year for the Active Partnership – starting with our name change from Kent Sport to Active Kent & Medway and the launch of our new website at our annual conference in June 2022. It provided a great opportunity to bring together partners old and new to share insight and learnings from across the sport, physical activity, health, charity and community sectors, to focus on how we can work together to increase activity levels across the county and tackle the inequalities that prevent so many enjoying the benefits that moving more in our everyday lives can bring.
We welcomed Graham Razey, CEO of East Kent Colleges Group, as our new Active Partnership Board Chair and continue to work closely with all Board members to guide our work and ensure good governance.
Sharing learning with a view to building partner capacity, capability and most importantly confidence has been a real theme for us this year. With insight based on our own learning into Tackling Inequalities through Sport and Physical Activity and Using Youth Voice to engage young people in sport and activity as well as that from our Everyday Active Campaign and regular partner forums and workshops. Insight, that has alongside extensive consultation helped to inform the development of Move Together – Kent and Medway’s 2023-2027 Strategy for Sport and Physical Activity, which will be launched in May 2023.
This review provides a summary of our work in 2022-23 across our five identified priorities plus our Everyday Active Campaign, as well as links to case studies and videos designed to bring this work to life. Telling the stories and sharing the experiences of real people from across our county and how sport and physical activity really can change lives.
Finally, we would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge the support we are given by Sport England, Kent County Council and our District Councils and thank the hundreds of organisations and individuals across Kent and Medway that we work with on a daily basis to get more people, more active, more often.
Making it easier for people to be active locally and using sport and physical activity’s unique ability to make places better to live in and bring people together, particularly where inequalities are greatest.
Successfully administered Sport England’s Together Fund to broaden the opportunities available for those from lower socio-economic groups; disabled people; culturally diverse communities; and people with long term health conditions. In the last year we have supported 62 projects:
- 20 projects targeting culturally diverse communities.
- More than 25 projects for people from lower socio economic groups.
- Over 40 projects supporting disabled people and people with a long term health condition.
These opportunities have impacted 2,316 participants, with data continuing to be collected. Our Tackling Inequalities through Sport and Physical Activity report was published highlighting the significant impact and learnings from this collaborative work since 2020.
Everyday Active is our campaign to increase participation in sport and physical activity and promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, particularly amongst under-represented groups. The website is the go-to resource for the campaign. Website visitors have grown by 15% this year with over 98,000 views.
- Our 6 Everyday Active Champions promote local opportunities in Medway, Tunbridge Wells, Tonbridge, Gravesham, Thanet and Swale (Isle of Sheppey).
- The community webpages support the promotion of activities to the local community, health care professionals and other front line workers.
- Information is also promoted via the Everyday Active social media channels and has resulted in a steady growth of followers and engagement across all channels. Campaign themes such as Outdoors Is Free and Winter Wellbeing In Kent, have ensured effective content planning and implementation.
Worked with Medway Council and Age UK to support the development of 4 new Sporting Memories clubs (3 in Medway and 1 in Marden). The Kent Sporting Memories book has been accepted into the British Library meaning it will be securely preserved whilst also being accessible in libraries in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland.
A collaboration has been established between Active Kent and Medway, Action for Sport, Heart of Kent Hospice and schools in Aylesford to pilot ‘Kit to Get Fit’, an intervention whereby kit is donated and re-distributed to those most in need. Environmental and educational messages are being delivered into school assemblies, resulting in donations being received. The project also prevents sports kit (sports shoes, clothing and exercise equipment) going to landfill.
Hear how Age UK in Faversham and Sittingbourne used Sport England’s Together Fund to deliver Walking Netball sessions for the community to tackle isolation, reconnect socially and improve physical and mental wellbeing.
“Regardless of whether we are successful or not, I really appreciate your willingness to work so collaboratively on this. It makes a massive difference and really helps to make the process of getting our clients more support easier, so I’m very grateful!”
Mid Kent Mind
Health and Wellbeing
Creating partnerships and opportunities that enable everyone to benefit from an active lifestyle. We continue to further develop the interaction and collaboration between Active Kent & Medway and the health system through engaging, influencing and upskilling the workforce.
Health Care Professionals upskilled
Front Line Professionals upskilled
Training and Collaboration
Delivered 5 workshops to support people who are having conversations about physical activity and to promote Everyday Active and the opportunities available. This includes Active Kent & Medway’s own Everyday Active Workshop.
Co-ordinated a ‘connecting physical activity and health workshop’ bringing together representatives from health, sport, leisure and physical activity, to develop a shared action plan to better connect the health and physical activity sectors whilst supporting the delivery of health outcomes.
Supported over 40 partners with projects targeting disabled people and those with long term health conditions. Partners include local Age UK organisations, Involve Kent, Kent and Medway NHS & Social Care Partnership Trust, MIND (Mid Kent and South Kent), Kenward Trust (Alcohol and Drug Rehabilitation), Parkinson’s UK, Rapport Housing & Care.
Collaborated with a wide range of National Governing Bodies, clubs and local organisations on joint promotion of the Release the Pressure campaign. This included development of a campaign toolkit and delivery of Everyday Mental Health training in partnership with Mid Kent MIND. Resources and training were well received with positive engagement levels across all channels.
Hear how Vicky from Kent Wildlife Trust used the Tackling Inequalities Fund to connect people with the natural world to overcome anxiety and depression.
“I would like to thank you personally for all the help you gave to us in getting this application just right and for your understanding of the changes we made during the time of the grant. We always want to be flexible and meet the needs of those we support and you very kindly allowed us to do this. This flexibility has, I believe enhanced the opportunities we have been able to offer and the impact of these activities has been huge”.
Alzheimer’s and Dementia Support Services
Positive Activities for Children and Young People
Enabling children and young people to enjoy being active and creating the right foundations for a long, active and healthy life.
Young People Surveyed
Young Volunteers Trained
School Games Events
Management of the Department for Education’s Opening Schools Facilities Fund continued. £357, 868 was awarded to schools to open up their sports halls, pitches and gymnasiums. 31 schools signed up to open their facilities for community use with 5,881 survey responses from young people informing delivery plans.
Our Positive Activities for Young People Fund continues to support young people from under-represented groups. Designed with young people for young people, in 2022-23 £8,471 was awarded to 4 new and 6 existing projects. In total, 55 projects were supported since the start of the 2021-22 academic year, benefitting 2,533 participants, including 596 disabled young people and 755 from culturally diverse communities.
Conference, School Games and Volunteering
Primary Schools received support for the Primary PE and Sport Premium with the annual Primary PE Conference in June 2022. 146 delegates from 101 primary schools across Kent and Medway heard about inclusion, Active 60 and designing the curriculum.
Kent School Games activity continues to evolve to engage those most affected by inequalities through the wider development of children and young people using different themes: Physical Me, Social Me, Thinking Me, Personal Me, Healthy Me and Competitive Me. 22 events were delivered to 1,061 young people by 109 young leaders.
Using the inspiration and profile of the Birmingham Commonwealth Games to engage new and different children and young people, Active Kent & Medway and our local School Games Organiser network delivered 8 legacy events in Bowls, Cycling, TrYathlon and Wheelchair Basketball to 296 children and young people.
Delivery of the Activity Volunteer Award to 471 young people, provided a pathway into volunteering and equipping them with transferable life skills. 21 schools and 2 community organisations registered to deliver the award to their young people.
Safeguarding continues to be embedded in our work and our Safeguarding Plan for children and young people was shared by the Child Protection in Sport Unit as an example of good practice.
Hear how Yofi from Yo! Street Zone used Sport England’s Together Fund to deliver street football sessions for young people in Margate to bring together the local community, to try a new sport, learn new skills and make new friends.
“My son came out yesterday so excited. He absolutely loved the bowls. He is not a sporty person at all, but he loved it so now we have found a sport he really enjoys. Thank you”.
Parent of Participant
Supporting local organisations to better understand their community and to deliver activities that are appropriate to people’s needs and motivations.
Our Everyday Active Small Grant continues to support clubs and organisations to encourage their local community to be active through developing their existing offer or providing new opportunities. In 2022-23, £32,217 was awarded to 71 organisations, benefitting 1,321 participants.
The focus of our Coach and Official’s Bursary moved to those taking their first steps into coaching and officiating. As a result, 56 individuals were awarded a bursary across 9 different sports. We have continued to receive group applications from clubs looking to increase the number of coaches as they balance the increase in participation demand with available volunteers.
The KCC Capital Grant Scheme for Sport awarded £90,000 to 20 organisations to enhance their facilities and levered £1,930,847 of additional investment into Kent. Projects included changing room extensions, energy efficient projects and adaptive equipment for disabled people.
296 national and international athletes supported through our FANS scheme with 48 grants, totalling £9,825, awarded to athletes in full time education to cover training, equipment, travel and accommodation costs.
Training and Development
Delivered virtually and face -to-face, 1,400 individuals have benefited from training opportunities. These include sharing and learning events, conferences, safeguarding workshops and sport specific training.
Developed with StreetGames, a Workforce Principles pilot captured valuable insight from The Sports Trust in Folkestone, around organisation recruitment, development and retention. The Trust has reflected and enhanced their processes and we will continue to work with them to share the insight and learning with other organisations.
Project 500, our regional initiative supporting women in coaching celebrated 10 years with a webinar showcasing the impact and sharing the learning to influence the coaching system for the future. In Kent, we have started working with Sports Connect, Gravesham Borough Council and Thanet District Council to develop local Coaching Communities that will support female coaches.
Hear how Vanessa at Whitstable Lawn Tennis Club used Sport England’s Together Fund to offer inclusive tennis sessions for the local community to tackle inactivity, reduce isolation and to enable participants to make friendships and reconnect with each other.
“Please don’t underestimate how brilliant this small grant funding scheme is to be able to test and launch a new service with a minimal funding application and a quick turnaround. Test and learn is so important to deliver continuous improvements.”
Nest + Grow CIC
Creating and protecting places and spaces that make it easier for people to be active.
Activity Tracker Steps
C02 saved through Active Travel
We continue to work in partnership with Explore Kent. The service has been commissioned to deliver campaigns in relation to encouraging people to be active outdoors, including walking, cycling and connecting with natural spaces. As well as encouraging people to choose walking or wheeling for short journeys instead of driving, a new guide for the Medway Canoe Trail has also been published.
Explore Kent brought together partners from Public Health and Social Prescribing as well as green and blue space providers to drive forward the work of Kent’s Green Social Prescribing network group.
Collaboration and Activity Challenges
Working strategically with local partners such as Kent FA and Football Foundation on Local Football Facility Plans as well as influencing the design of healthy places and spaces through our partners at Otterpool Park and Ebbsfleet Development Corporation.
The Port of London Authority’s Active Thames Grant awarded £49,609 to 10 projects in Kent, covering walking, sailing and rowing. Working with partners to better serve the water sports community, the fund aims to encourage the least active groups to use their local blue spaces.
Two county-wide activity challenges were delivered in 2022-23 using our activity tracker platform, along with 13 closed challenges for local organisations and teams. Overall, 1,282 participants took part, accumulating 184 million steps. For those participants who swapped the car for walking or cycling for all or part of their journey, collectively they saved 5,400 kg of C02 through active travel.
Electric-bikes (e-bikes) let you cycle for longer, keep you fit and reduce your impact on the environment compared to a car. Our friends at Explore Kent visited Andy and Leslie who have been using e-bikes for two years. They recently met with KCC cycle instructor Mark to learn how to get the most out of their e-bikes.
“I feel that I am helping to tackle climate change by cutting down on CO2 emissions. I also know that I am making a positive step towards being more active and more healthy.”
Active Travel Challenge Participant
Here’s what some of our partners and project participants have said about working with us, and being involved in the projects we’ve supported during 2022-23:
“What you have done was exceptional and has made such a difference to the lives of the people within the group. On their behalf I truly can’t thank you enough.” West Kingsdown Boxing Club
“I wanted to say thank you for the excellent presentation and the real joined-up partnership working you modelled at the Kent and Medway Networking and Partnership meeting. I felt really proud of that whole section…The audience learnt loads and took inspiration from your work.” National Academy for Social Prescribing
“Thank you for your efforts on this audit. Strong standards were demonstrated, your website is really easy to navigate and with an explicit safeguarding emphasis.” Medway Safeguarding Children Partnership
“I would just like to say a big thank you for all the help you have given me regarding the promotion of the Kent festival events for children with disabilities, this is much appreciated”. Kent Golf
“Thank you both so much for all of your help yesterday. Could not have done it without you both...fantastic help. Thank you.” Gravesham Borough Council
“Thank you for hosting the first School Games Dodgeball event. Our students thoroughly enjoyed their time with you playing the other schools. A few of the comments I have received from them...'I have improved my resilience' - 'Each game was friendly but competitive' - 'I have definitely improved my confidence and believe I can do more'...and lots of thank you's!” Dover Girls Grammar School
“Just thought I would let you know I had some feedback from a gentleman in class today that stated he feels the class saved his life as he had a fall and because of the exercises he has been doing in the class he was able to get himself up off the floor.” Medway Public Health
“This really is brilliant. I love the simplicity of the report and the different ways you have captured the learning using videos, case studies and sketch notes. The recommendations for engaging each audience is also really helpful as is the final section on sustainability. Great work.” Sport England
"I attended your workshop today and wanted to say what a very worthwhile seminar it was...Well done for the great work of Everyday Active". NHS Health Promotion, Gravesham
Thank you for reading our review of 2022-23, highlighting the great work that is going on around the county to get more people, more active, more often. If you have any questions or would like to discuss any element of this annual review, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of the team will get back to you shortly.