BME Sport Cymru helps increase BME participation in Welsh sport by supporting organisations to work with minority ethnic communities.
BME Sport Cymru is an initiative designed to make it easier for BME communities to engage with sport in Wales. The project is funded by Sport Wales and is led by WCVA.
The project works by offering guidance on how to make sports clubs more welcoming and inclusive for people from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds.
Training and workshops are also delivered to increase knowledge, awareness of barriers and how to engage with different BME groups.
For more information, please contact: Rajma Begum – National BME Diversity Officer: rbegum@WCVA.cymru
Tel: 02920 431726
The story so far…
The BME Sport Cymru project was set up in 2016 to support a sustainable approach to BME sports participation, with 3 main priorities:
- Increase BME participation in sport
- Build capacity for BME engagement in sport
- Tackle inequality
The project has not only achieved the delivery targets (around participation, volunteering, events, partnerships) but it has also achieved many other additional outcomes around health, crime, training and education, community cohesion, confidence, and tackling isolation which far outweigh the initial objectives alone.
For example, Heather Lewis from Cardiff got to know some of the refugees and asylum seekers in her area and was struck by some of the incredibly difficult and awful things they’d experienced.
After they showed enthusiasm at watching her netball team play, started a team exclusively for women who were refugees and asylum seekers.
We funded the room hire and coaching qualifications for Heather to run the team efficiently.
Since then they have since received donations of equipment from local athletes and the room is now offered to the team free of charge by the local church where the sessions are held.
‘My life has changed by accessing your project activities. I don’t feel lonely or depressed anymore’
BME Sport Cymru has made a huge difference at many levels:
- Participants and volunteers have described an increase in their health, wellbeing, confidence, and have more optimism towards their pathways for development.
- The BME community in Wales has more awareness of sport and is more active, inspiring a wider circle through word of mouth
- Community organisations have strengthened governance and broken into new areas of delivery, with increased funding support to sustain activities, and better relations with Sport Wales and NGBs
- The project team themselves have developed more skills and knowledge, confidence in development work, tutor training, some are now on equality boards and have NGB coaching qualifications
- NGBs and sporting partners have better engagement with BME communities in Wales, a better understanding of cultures and barriers, and of course having a broader diversity of players means that the wealth of talent will continue to increase for NGBs!
- Partnerships with Police on engagement through sport and crime reduction and to encourage more reporting of hate crime
- And of course, WCVA get to work in a new area of sport and have better engagement with BME groups.