Supporting clubs and organisations navigate a crowded funding landscape – takeaways from the Alliance’s recent funding workshop

Fit for Your Funding Future room ()

On 30 November, the Alliance hosted an in-person workshop on the current funding landscape for sport and recreation clubs and organisations. The successful Fit For Your Funding Future event was attended by over 60 sport and recreation sector leaders.

What we delivered

Hosted in a central London venue, the workshop brought together Alliance members with experts in funding, bidding and commercial partnership building.

Financing and fundraising is consistently raised as a key priority by our members. With the sector still recovering from the impact of the pandemic and the enduring cost-of-living crisis, concerns about accessing funding are at a high.

Through a combination of presentations, Q&As, and opportunities for peer-to-peer learning and networking, we delivered a session covering fundamental principles of best funding, bidding and sponsorship practice and exploring how clubs, organisations and the people who run them can navigate the evolving and increasingly competitive funding landscape.

What we learned

The event aimed to improve knowledge and awareness of the funding landscape, for organisations to understand how best to capitalise on its opportunities and mitigate its threats.

This was explored through a line-up of speakers from a variety of organisations, who each covered different areas of funding including:

  • A trend analysis of the UK’s funding landscape and how organisations can use insight and impact assessment to best highlight their work – Richard Boardman, Head of Research and Development at the Sport and Recreation Alliance.
  • How organisations become more ‘fit’ to bid for, sustain and receive funding by increasing operational efficiency – Mark Walker, consultant and founder of Oaks Consultancy.
  • What makes a funding bid stand out? What funders are looking for and what to avoid – Neil Sood, Sport for Change Manager at Comic Relief.
  • How to develop relationships with commercial partners? The importance of showcasing the assets and adopting an entrepreneurial mindset – Kenny Bailey, Consultant and Non-Executive Director (Commercial Lead) at the Sport and Recreation Alliance.

The quality of the content and conversation in the room were big highlights for attendees and speakers. As we continue to navigate the ever-evolving funding landscape and strive towards our ambition to increase activity levels in the UK, we look forward to continuing working with and supporting our members, and importantly creating more similar opportunities for learning, connection and peer-to-peer sharing.

For any further detail or questions regarding the event please contact our Head of Research and Development, Ricky Boardman, on - all attendees will be contacted with materials from the day.