Small Grant Report 2022-23


Active Kent & Medway logo with Kent Trust for Youth Sport logoThe Small Grant provides funding of up to £500 for organisations who are looking to encourage their local community to be active, or to continue to be active.

In partnership with Kent Trust for Youth Sport, Active Kent & Medway has been able to award funding to local clubs and organisations across the county to develop their existing offer or to provide new opportunities.

The following report highlights the key findings and outcomes from local projects who received small grant funding in 2022-23. We’d like to thank all the organisations and participants who contributed to this report.






Participants engaged






Culturally diverse



All disabilities

All figures correct as of June 2023.

Audience: 0 - 11 Years

The latest Sport England Active Lives Children and Young People survey shows that 44% of primary aged children in Kent are meeting the Chief Medical Officer’s guidelines of being active for 60 minutes a day. Whilst activity levels are increasing, we’re not quite back to pre-pandemic levels. Working alongside primary schools, clubs and community organisations to provide positive experiences at an early age can help build the foundations for an active life.






Participants engaged



Project Impact:

Increased membership

Increased activity levels

Improved health and wellbeing

Upskilled workforce

Raised the clubs profile

Development of new friendships

“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

Key Learnings:

1. Involve participants from the start. Involve the target audience in the project design and tailor the project to their needs, motivations and barriers. Find out about what they love, what excites them and how they want the sessions delivered.

2. Link in with local partners. Partners may be able to provide advice, facilities, equipment, training and contacts. Identify local partners such as charities, voluntary services and schools who want to achieve the same goal.

3. Learn from your successes and challenges. Be prepared to adapt, change and learn from participant feedback to improve project design and delivery. If collecting feedback, make sure these methods are simple, inclusive and positive and be prepared to act on comments.

Case Studies: 0 – 11 Years

Audience: 12 - 20 Years

Sport England’s Active Lives Children and Young People survey shows that 48% of secondary aged young people in Kent are active, achieving 60 minutes of physical activity a day. Activity levels have increased above pre-pandemic levels so it’s important to sustain and grow this number. Active Kent & Medway’s latest Positive Activities for Young People report highlighted that co-creating activities, giving young people a voice and ensuring a safe, friendly environment was key to engaging them in physical activity.






Participants engaged


Project Impact:

Leadership development

Mixing of communities

Increased reach

Safe space to be active

New opportunities

Club growth

“We are very grateful to Active Kent & Medway for their support. What a brilliant source of funding this is, we have shared it with other clubs in the locality.” Shepherdswell Cricket Club

Key Learnings:

1. Adapt sessions to suit your audience. Be prepared to adapt your offer to suit your participants needs. Continually consult to find out if and where they may need further support.

2. Recruit the right staff. Recruit and deploy a workforce who understand, encourage and listen. Young people want deliverers who are fun, approachable and supportive of their needs.

3. Listen to the needs of your participants. Get to know your participants, listen to their needs and address them. This builds up trust, gives them a voice and allows you to shape your activities.

Case Studies: 12 – 20 Years

Audience: 21+ Years

63.5% of adults in Kent are achieving the recommended 150 minutes of physical activity a week. Activity levels vary, men are more likely to be active than women, the older you become the less active you are, and the less affluent are least likely to be active. However, we know that engaging in sport and physical activity improves mental and physical health so it’s important to stay active to live longer better.






Participants engaged


Project Impact:

Increased membership

Improved mobility

Creation of new communities

Family engagement

Increased independence

Falls prevention

“At this time, 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

Key Learnings:

1. Use various marketing methods. Social media is a great free tool to get your project out there but not everyone has access to it. Think about your target audience and find out the best way to get information to them.

2. Work with your local community. Use the local people within the community to engage with your target audience and build bridges. Use this local knowledge and insight to understand your audience and where physical activity fits in their lives.

3. Build in social elements. Create opportunities for participants to socialise and connect within the sessions. Offer tea and biscuits, it could be the start of new friendships and a support network of like-minded people.

Case Studies: 21+ Years


people playing netball in a sports hallSustainability is an important element of all projects and needs to be thought about from the very beginning. It’s more than finding more funds to continue the project, it’s a combination of several factors to ensure the organisation can continue to provide benefits to its community in the future.

Ways to make your project more sustainable:

  • Consider participant contributions. To cover project costs, charge a small fee for sessions. This can cover coaching costs, facility hire or equipment. Charging participants will cover some of these costs, support the continuation of the project and will likely mean participants are invested.
  • Link in with local partners. Reach out to local organisations. They can offer expertise, advice, facilities, equipment and access to new audiences. Partnerships can bring on board different strengths, skills and experiences to better serve communities and sustain projects.
  • Think about your sinking funds. Part of running a project involves looking after its assets. Ensure your organisation has an appropriate level of finance allocated to maintain and replace facilities and equipment. This helps retain members and attract new ones.
  • Develop your workforce. Invest in staff, volunteer and participant training to ensure the long-term sustainability of your project. Rather than bringing coaches in, upskill your current workforce to reduce costs, support their development and increase your offering. If you need help to finance a development opportunity, the Active Kent & Medway Coach & Official Bursary might be able to help.
  • Promote other local opportunities. Everyday Active provides details on a wide range of low cost, accessible, local activities, as well as hints and tips, personal stories and resources for health partners. Share this resource with participants to highlight other opportunities to keep active in the local area.

Contact Us

If there’s anything in this report that you’d like to discuss or find out more, please email and one of the team will be in touch.

If you’re a formally constituted, not-for-profit or statutory organisation looking to provide physical activity opportunities for your local community, we welcome applications of up to £500 through our Small Grant Fund.

Follow this link to apply for the Active Kent & Medway Small Grant

Be inspired and read how other clubs and organisations across Kent and Medway have benefitted from the Small Grant.

Follow this link to view a range of Grant Case Studies

Follow this link for a full list of Grant Recipients in 2022-23

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