Our projects improve the wellbeing of individuals, communities and society as a whole.
Our investments increase participation in a range of activities: sport and physical activity; culture and the arts; social action; volunteering.
This participation leads people to develop and realise their potential, work productively and creatively, and build relationships.
There are many barriers to people getting involved – financial, psychological, geographical, lack of opportunities or because they feel life’s struggles simply make it too hard. This has a negative impact on our sense of happiness and our ability to be the person we want to be. Our projects overcome these barriers, creating new opportunities and empowering people to get out, be involved and feel better.
Spirit funded One Million Mentors platform is now live
Spirit has awarded £50,000 to youth leadership organisation UpRising to develop an online mentoring platform. The pilot version is now live and currently looking to recruit mentors from Manchester, Cardiff and London.
Spirit of 2012 awards funding to community circus project in Northern Ireland
Spirit of 2012 has awarded £100,000 to Streetwise Community Circus, to deliver a wide range of inclusive circus workshops across Northern Ireland.
Spirit of 2012’s Youth Advisory Panel awards its first funding grants
Spirit of 2012’s Youth Advisory Panel (Spirit YAP) has awarded its first funding grants. Two separate awards of nearly £50,000 have been made to a young offenders’ reading project in Northern Ireland and a Plymouth-based intergenerational music project.
Let's take a quick look at some of the ways in which we're using our Big Lottery Funding to help make people feel happier in over 100 locations across the UK...
1) Finding one million mentors…
Research shows that helping others through volunteering and mentoring can increase people's happiness and wellbeing. With that in mind, Spirit has awarded £50,000 to youth leadership organisation UpRising to develop an online mentoring platform. The pilot version is now live and currently looking to recruit mentors from Manchester, Cardiff and London.
Challenge Fund - One Year on: Beacon Hill Arts
Having recently announced three new recipients of our Music and Dance Challenge Fund, we thought we would catch up with last year’s recipients to find out about their highlights of the year and any advice they have for this year’s successful projects, starting with Beacon Hill Arts...
Volunteers Week - Ellie Page from ViewTube Runners Athletics Club
10 ways we're tackling...
loneliness and isolation
At Spirit of 2012, we’re absolutely committed to funding projects that bring people together. With that in mind, here are just ten of the (many) ways we are helping tackle the loneliness and isolation felt by an increasing number of people across the UK.
The Spirit of Rugby Manchester Challenge
'To get people in this football mad city to take a look at Rugby'
Debbie Lye visited a group of Manchester Metropolitan University Students who are passionate about Rugby, and full of ideas…
A spirited conversation with... Get Out, Get Active's Kat Southwell
Spirit of 2012 funds Get Out, Get Active (GOGA) - a £4.5 million initiative, which brings together 18 localities in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales and numerous national partners. The first programme of its kind on such a scale, GOGA will support disabled and non-disabled people to enjoy being active together. Developed to get some of the UK's least active people moving more, GOGA will concentrate on fun and inclusive activities delivered over three years.
Spirit helps young people get active all the way to Rio
Spirit of 2012 is one of the funders of Get Set’s Road to Rio - the official youth engagement programme from Team GB and Paralympics GB. It uses the magic of the Games, the Olympic and Paralympic Values to help young people fulfil their potential and get them active.
Spirit is recruiting a Communications Intern - could it be you?!
Spirit of 2012 is recruiting for a friendly and motivated Communications Intern to support our Head of Communications and help us plan and stage a milestone conference and reception in October.
Are you creative and energetic, with excellent interpersonal and all-round communication skills? Do you write with flair and confidence, with the ability to adapt style and tone for different purposes and audiences? Do you have a good eye for accuracy and detail? Are you highly organised and motivated and able to use your initiative?
Spirit of 2012 helps Young Londoners tackle local issues at Mayor’s Youth Summit
Along with Unilever, Spirit of 2012 is really pleased to fund the Team London Young Ambassadors Programme, which supports social action in London schools. Over 250,000 Londoners aged 5-18 have participated since the programme launched in 2013. Young people from every borough have taken part in events and projects focusing on a variety of issues, including food waste and poverty, the environment, homelessness, gardening, community spirit, bullying and friendship.
Spirit and Stopgap Dance
Spirit of 2012 recently awarded over £650,000 to three separate projects, all of which focus on inspiring disabled and non-disabled people through music and dance.
Spirit and me... Joe Cohen
Joe Cohen explains how Good morning Newtownabbey - funded by Spirit as part of our Fourteen programme - has become a daily lifeline and given him peace of mind.
Spirit of 2012 receives further 2014 Commonwealth Games Legacy funding
Spirit of 2012 has received £200,000 of additional Commonwealth Games 2014 Legacy Funding from the Scottish Government.
Spirit has been granted this additional funding to ensure that the learning from the Legacy 2014 projects can be shared as widely as possible across Scotland, helping to create a lasting legacy of increased activity from the 2014 Games. We are also working closely with University of Strathclyde, to ensure the impact and learning from the eleven projects is captured effectively.
A spirited conversation with… One Million Mentors' Alvin Carpio
Spirit has awarded £50,000 to youth leadership organisation UpRising to develop an online mentoring platform. The pilot version is now live and currently looking to recruit mentors from Manchester, Cardiff and London. The aim is to attract large numbers of professionals and train them to become effective mentors who can help maximise young people’s talents and get them into the world of work.
Grant to enhance volunteering in Wales
Grant will help ensure volunteers in Wales have positive and meaningful experiences.
Spirit of 2012 and England Athletics to launch volunteering programme
Spirit has awarded over £900,000 to England Athletics to deliver a volunteering programme called Spirit17.
Ten ways we're helping people...
get out & get active
One of our main aims here at Spirit of 2012 is to enable people to participate in a wide range of activities and engage in their communities - improving their wellbeing in the process. Here are just a few of the ways we're making that happen...
Spirit’s Team London Ambassadors programme wins Department for Education Award
Team London Young Ambassadors, the Mayor of London's volunteering programme for schools co-funded by Spirit of 2012, has won the Department for Education (DfE) Character Award for Greater London.
Get Out, Get Active website goes live
A new Get Out, Get Active website www.getoutgetactive.co.uk has been launched today, to enable as many people as possible to access essential GOGA information. The mobile responsive site will act as a hub for GOGA delivery partners and will also support disabled and non-disabled people to learn more about the programme and to get involved in GOGA activities in their own communities.
Vacancy: Head of Learning and Impact
Spirit of 2012 is currently recruiting for a Head of Learning and Impact.
Are you interested in how investment in sport, arts and volunteering can improve the wellbeing of people and communities? Are you experienced in monitoring and communicating those human and social impacts?
Happy and Healthy 2016!
As we enter the new year Debbie Lye, Chief Executive of Spirit of 2012, welcomes the publication of the government’s new strategy for an active nation.
Sporting Future: A New Strategy for an Active Nation, published at the end of last year, marks an interesting shift in the Government’s approach to sport and physical activity. In the simplest of terms Sporting Future is less about numbers playing sport in National Governing Body settings and more about the impact that sport and activity has on physical, mental and social wellbeing.
A spirited conversation with… Baroness Sue Campbell
Spirit of 2012 funds Inclusive Futures, a leadership and volunteering initiative which is delivered by the Youth Sport Trust and is based in nine host cities across the UK. Young volunteers in each city are guided by a Volunteer Coordinator and each city organises training camps and activities throughout the year, as well as identifying local volunteering opportunities. The project aims to change behaviour and attitudes among young people on issues related to ability, access and equality in sport.
Spirit funded DanceSyndrome project wins major local award
The inspiring work of Spirit partner DanceSyndrome has been recognised at the Red Rose Awards, where the charity has been chosen as the winner of this year's Not-For-Profit Award. The awards exist to celebrate excellence in business in the Lancashire area.
Spirit of 2012 awards over £650,000 to music & dance projects
Spirit of 2012 has awarded over £650,000 from the Spirit of Achievement Arts and Culture Challenge Fund to three separate projects. All three of this year’s projects focus on inspiring disabled and non-disabled people through music and dance.
The three successful organisations are Creative Arts East and Stopgap Dance Company, both working in the East of England and DanceSyndrome in the North West.
Volunteers Week - pupils from Clare Mount Specialist Sports College
Spirit of 2012 is partnering up with Team Personal Best to support the London 2017 inspiration Volunteer programme. England Athletics will receive £900,000 over the next three years.
Tackling loneliness and isolation through memories of sport
Spirit of 2012 funds Sporting Memories: Uniting Generations - a project designed to capture memories of Olympic and Paralympic Games gone by and to tackle social isolation amongst older people.
With loneliness and isolation being at the forefront of people’s minds this Christmas, Tony Jameson-Allen, Co-founder & Director of Sporting Memories Network, talks about how they are tackling this issue in a very unique way.
A spirited conversation with… Georgina Duffy
Spirit of 2012 was a partner of the 2014 Commonwealth Games, and was chosen by the Scottish Government to create a sustainable physical activity programme - The Legacy 2014 Physical Activity Fund - to support the objectives of getting the least active people in Scotland more active.
The fund aims to reach those people who are classed as physically inactive and work with groups who are most at risk of inactivity. One of the eleven projects funded through the programme is Drumchapel Sport.
Spirit of 2012 funding BEDSA Connecting Communities Award
Spirit of 2012 is sponsoring the Connecting Communities Award at this year’s Lycamobile British Ethnic Diversity Sports Awards (BEDSAs).
Fourteen – a continuing legacy story
As part of the Glasgow XX Commonwealth Games legacy, Spirit of 2012 awarded grants to the UK Community Foundation (UKCF) and Springboard to support fourteen communities across the UK to allocate funding locally over three years.
Top Tips – how to engage with people living with dementia
Spirit of 202 funds Our Day Out - a unique dementia-friendly programme for rurally-isolated older people in Norfolk. The programme is delivered by Creative Arts East and aims to reinvigorate older people’s engagement with high-quality arts and also to evaluate the impact of regular creative engagement on the wellbeing of older people.
International Day of Disabled People - 3 December
Spirit of 2012 funds Unlimited Impact - an organisation that works with and supports young disabled artists and helps them reach out to wider and more diverse audiences. To coincide with the United Nations’ International Day of Disabled People on 3 December, Jo Verrent, Senior Producer at Unlimited Impact, writes here about the current state of play.
Spirit and England Athletics launch £900k London 2017 volunteering programme
Spirit of 2012 has awarded over £900,000 to England Athletics to deliver the volunteering element of ‘Team Personal Best’ – the inspiration programme of London 2017.
The funding was awarded in response to research commissioned by Spirit and conducted by England Athletics for a volunteering programme which aims to increase the number, diversity and skillsets of athletics volunteers.
10 ways we’re supporting...
participation in arts & culture
Here at Spirit, we’re always keen to help increase opportunities for people to participate in the arts. As such, we support projects all across the UK that enable people to participate in arts and cultural activities, both individually and as a part of their wider community. Here's just some of the ways we're doing it...
Celebrating Inclusive Futures
With the Paralympics around the corner, the Youth Sport Trust is leading a fresh community drive to encourage more disabled young people into volunteering as part of its Inclusive Futures (IF) partnership with Spirit of 2012. Here, Spirit Chief Executive Debbie Lye talks about the project.
Spirit of 2012 receives additional £500k of Glasgow 2014 Legacy Funding
Spirit is a Legacy Partner of the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games, and has received an additional £500k of funding from the Scottish Government.