Chance to Shine

On the evening of 2nd February 2016, WNST vice-chairman Sir Rodney Walker and CEO Stewart Goshawk, were delighted to be invited to 10 Downing Street to help celebrate the work of Chance to Shine – the national organisation working to re-introduce cricket into state primary schools across the country and into inner-city estates, teaching young people the skills, disciplines and values of the game.  The event, hosted by Samantha Cameron, marked 10 years of Chance to Shine, during which time three million children, almost half of whom are girls, have had the chance to play cricket at school.

Speaking at the event, Mrs Cameron said, “I am delighted to help Chance to Shine celebrate their three millionth child. Cricket is for all and children can learn teamwork, resilience, leadership and respect. It increases their confidence, motivation and aspiration.”

During the coming year, Chance to Shine expects to visit its 12,000th school and open its 150th community project.  The organisation is excellently supported by the cricket fraternity, including professional players past and present, as well as by a host of celebrity cricket lovers, some of whom were in attendance at Downing Street.  Through an innovative partnership, many of the England Women’s cricket team have coaching contracts with Chance to Shine, enabling them both to put something back into the game and find time to train and play themselves.

The value of Chance to Shine’s work is demonstrated by research which shows that 84% of teachers involved in the programme believe cricket helps their students to learn teamwork and co-operation. Furthermore, in a study undertaken by Loughborough University, 82% of Chance to Shine participants were able to demonstrate the MCC Spirit of Cricket values of teamwork, sportsmanship and respect.  Further research by the England & Wales Cricket Board highlighted that 58% of pupils who play cricket in school say they like the sport. Of those who don’t play at school, just 1% say they like cricket. Chance to Shine also appears to deliver a 60% increase in children’s intent to attend a club.

In our most recent grants round, WNST has provided further funding for Chance to Shine to run its community programme, Chance to Shine Street, in LB Brent.  This fast and furious version of the game is designed to encourage maximum participation and all-round skills of the players.  We are delighted to provide this new funding and look forward to seeing the project develop in the coming months.

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