The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games kick off with what’s sure to be a spectacular opening ceremony this evening.
A decade and a day on from the London 2012 Olympic opening ceremony, England will again play host to a festival of sport with athletes coming from all corners of the globe to show off their talents in world-leading facilities and in front of sell-out crowds.
Since December 2017 when Birmingham was announced as the host city, we’ve been working to ensure those facilities, and Games as a whole, have a lasting impact on both the West Midlands and the wider population.
We’ve invested £35 million of National Lottery and government funding into the Games, on everything from ensuring key venues such as the Sandwell Aquatics Centre are not just fit for the Games but also long afterwards as a community facility, to providing support for the School Games and the Daily Mile to spread the impact of the Games to children and young people across the country.
One of our major focusses will be supporting community groups to help local people get involved with sport and physical activity, and our B2022 Places and Spaces Fund – backed by National Lottery Funding – is still open for applications.
We’re working with partners within communities because they are best placed to know what local people need and how to break some of the barriers that people face. That will help us in our mission to tackle inequalities, create more active communities and level up access to physical activity.
The video below gives a flavour of some of the projects that are already benefitting from our funding including the Balsall Heath-based Saheli Hub, that provides women-only exercise opportunities, and Tyseley’s Impact Fitness Hub that engages disadvantaged children, young people, women and families with activities such as judo, wrestling and boxing.