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Mayor of London partners with the Premier League to increase access to free football sessions and workshops for young Londoners

Tuesday 13 August 2019

  • Sadiq Khan joined Tottenham Hotspur and England captain, Harry Kane, at partnership launch 
  • Partnership with the Premier League Kicks programme will enable more young Londoners to benefit from free sports activities and workshops 
  • Providing more positive opportunities and pathways, as well as access to facilities 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, today joined Tottenham Hotspur and England captain Harry Kane at a Premier League Kicks session to launch a three-year partnership between City Hall, the Metropolitan Police and the Premier League which will enhance the delivery of the social inclusion programme in London.

Premier League Kicks was launched 13 years ago with the aim of inspiring children and young people to achieve their potential and improve their well-being. Aimed at 8-to-18-year-olds, Kicks gives participants access to free football sessions and activities, as well as workshops that support and educate.

Fifteen Premier League and EFL club community organisations in London are able to apply for funding to deliver the project at local facilities and pitches, with the project aiming to deliver at more than 150 locations across the capital and to engage more than 25,000 young people over the next three years.

The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC), are supporting the Premier League’s Kicks programme to provide positive, constructive activities for young Londoners, as part of their public health approach to tackling violence and providing young Londoners with positive opportunities to be provided in target areas. This will include workshops and mentoring for those most in need, such as young people who attend Pupil Referral Units in London. The project will continue to help build positive relationships between young people and the police, with Met officers regularly attending the London sessions.

Today, the Mayor joined Harry Kane, club ambassador Ledley King and 50 young people at a Kicks session run by the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation at the Duke’s Aldridge Academy in the shadow of their new stadium.

Tottenham were one of the four clubs to pilot Kicks in 2006 and since then have continued to provide free coaching sessions and workshops for young people, helping to create, deliver and sustain positive change.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I know from personal experience that sport can provide young people with life-changing opportunities, and I want all young Londoners to have the chance to reach their full potential. That is why I’m supporting the Premier League Kicks programme, providing young Londoners with free sports coaching, helping to build stronger and safer communities. The best time to stop violent crime is before it starts. This means investing in our young people, investing in our communities and investing in our city so that we give the next generation the chance to thrive.”

Bill Bush, Executive Director, Premier League, said: “For more than 13 years, Premier League Kicks has given young people access to free football, sport and educational sessions in local communities. We are pleased to extend this delivery in partnership with City Hall, the Metropolitan Police and professional football clubs, as well as the thousands of young people who get involved. Using clubs’ ability to regularly engage and build trusted relationships, the programme aims to provide a positive influence in young peoples’ lives. Kicks will continue to support them to develop their potential and to make a positive contribution in their communities, while also addressing topics from youth violence to equality and inclusion.”

Harry Kane, Tottenham Hotspur footballer said: “As a local lad, and someone who has played for Tottenham Hotspur since the age of 16, I am very proud of my Club and what it’s achieved through Kicks. Having access to play football, or any sport regularly, is important not just to improve your physical health, but your mental health as well. It’s been a pleasure visiting today’s session, and I hope the youngsters that I have met go onto achieve great things in their lives.”

Sarah Ebanja, Chief Executive, Tottenham Hotspur Foundation said: “Tottenham Hotspur Foundation has been making a difference to people’s lives for over a decade. We are proud to have piloted the Kicks programme 13 years ago and are still running the programme successfully to this day. We are passionate about providing young people with pathways and opportunities to play sport in a safe environment and equipping them with transferable skills which will help them have a positive future.”

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