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ESC seeks States approval to invest more than £1m in sport

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Monday 02 March 2020

More than £1m. will be invested in sport if the States agree proposals published today by the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture.

The Committee has submitted a Policy Letter for debate by the States before the end of this political term. It sets out the case for increasing investment in sport and physical activity and a 10-year plan to guide that additional investment. The Plan has eight objectives and is entitled 'Active-8: A Plan for Sport - 2021-2030'.

The States first directed the development of a Sports Strategy in 2015. When the current Committee was elected in 2018 it pledged to bring proposals to the States and it has worked on the Active-8 Plan as a matter of priority. The proposals follow extensive public consultation in 2018.

Working in partnership with the Guernsey Sports Commission through its 'Your Champions in Sport' Plan and other agencies and other States' strategies and work streams, the Active-8 Plan aims to 'Create Opportunity; Build Community; and Support Excellence in Sport and Physical Activity' through the delivery of the following eight objectives:

Deputy Matt Fallaize, President of the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture, said:

'The States first directed the development of a Sports Strategy in 2015. When my Committee was elected in 2018 we made a commitment to produce it and get it before the States. While the education part of our mandate understandably receives much public attention, from the Committee's perspective we have been equally as focused on delivering a Plan for Sport. The Plan is essential to underpin our proposed greater investment, and we're delighted to have reached an agreed position with the Policy & Resources Committee over an approach to funding the strategy.

The overarching aspiration of Active-8 is that everyone, regardless of their age, background or level of ability, has the opportunity and pathways available to them to be active, as well as participate in sport at whatever level they wish; and that opportunities for high performance and excellence exist for those who want to excel.'

The Committee will lead delivery of the Plan, which has the potential to promote a wide range of physical and mental health benefits for the community. This includes many benefits in health care and prevention of ill health as well as living well for longer. Physical inactivity continues to be responsible for one in six deaths in the UK and is estimated to cost the UK £7.4 billion annually (including £0.9 billion to the NHS alone). For this reason, some actions in the Plan may be reallocated along with the relevant resources to areas (government and non-government agencies) more appropriate for delivery. This will include the Committee working collaboratively with partners - making this a truly joined up way of working - for the ultimate benefit of the community.

Jon Ravenscroft, Chairman of the Guernsey Sports Commission, said:

'This is really positive news for Guernsey. We have been working closely with Education, Sport & Culture as we are passionate about sport and the many benefits, both mental and physical, that it brings. The Guernsey Sports Commission exists to encourage thousands of people across the Bailiwick to be more active and support those who have the talent to excel and so we are excited by the Active-8 plans being announced by the committee. We look forward to delivering our part of the Active-8 strategy through our own action plan which we announced earlier this year. I would like to say my thanks to Matt Fallaize, his fellow deputies and the team of civil servants that have assisted us so greatly and share our vision.'

The Plan itself contains a number of initial proposed actions aligned to each objective, estimated to cost an initial £1.15m to deliver. An additional £130k has been requested to develop further key baseline measures and key performance indicators - in doing so, ensuring the Active-8 Plan continues to develop, incorporating specific targets, measures and prioritised costings.

Deputy Fallaize said:

'Sport and physical activity are an integral part of our community life. My Committee realises the Active-8 Plan sets challenging but realistic objectives, highlighting our aims and aspirations to support and grow physical activity and sport within the Bailiwick - for everyone.'

The Plan for Sport policy letter can be read at https://gov.gg/StatesMeetings

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