£500 Grants Available for Sports Clubs in Somerset to become ‘Smokefree’

Oct 22, 2014

A £500 grant, available through Somerset Community Foundation, is being offered to sports clubs across Somerset with outdoor facilities, which coach young people between the ages of 10-16. Somerset Smokefree Alliance, a group of organisations working together to reduce the harm caused by tobacco, is offering the grant, but there are two conditions attached to the funding.

Firstly, the club must implement a Smokefree Policy, so that young people are not exposed to smoking; the site should be smokefree whenever young people are training or competing to help to ensure that young people don’t associate sports with smoking. The second condition is that the club would need to send at least one coach on the free-of-charge training course run by Somerset County Council, in partnership with SASP, which will provide sports coaches with relevant smokefree messages.

At present, over 1,600 young people aged between 11 and 15 take up smoking every year in Somerset. Two-thirds of smokers start before the age of 18. Children who start smoking before the age of 16 are twice as likely to continue as adults (compared to those who take up smoking later). Prevention of uptake is therefore vital in reducing the numbers of people smoking.

Nicola Crocker, Tobacco Control Specialist for Public Health at Somerset County Council, explains: “Our aim is to promote smokefree outdoor environments and to educate children and young people about the dangers of smoking.”

The deadline to access this funding is 28 November. Read more about how to apply here.

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