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and achieving their personal best

Bursary / Sponsorship Grants for Athletes

The bursary and sponsorship grants detailed here are most commonly open to individuals, whether children or adults, elite athletes or underprivileged.

You can also click enter keywords to search for relevant grants in our funding finder (to be linked).

The Rob George Foundation

Funding available: Usually not more than £3,000
Deadlines: None specified

The Rob George Foundation became established in January 2014 to provide bursary grants.

The Foundation, among other things, provides financial support to young people who demonstrate exceptional commitment and/or ability in the world of sport but may be held back by their financial situation from pursuing their goals.

Bursaries can be up to £3,000, but, in exceptional circumstances, more could be made available.

Dickie Bird Foundation

Funding available: Not specified
Deadlines: See website for meeting dates

The Dickie Bird Foundation offers grants to children under 16 years of age to participate in the sport of their choice, to the best of their ability, irrespective of their background, social circumstances, culture or ethnicity and to ensure that, in doing so, they improve their chances both inside and outside sport.

Children who, through no fault of their own, are disadvantaged, underprivileged, due to the financial situation of their family/guardians or carers are unable to follow or continue in the sport of their choice, can get help.

Grants are to help with the cost of clothing and equipment including bats, racquets, fencing swords, protective items etc for them to take part or continue in their chosen sport.

For more information call 07949 814222 or follow the link above.

John Weston Fund

Funding available: Up to £500
Deadlines: See website for details

Grants of up to £500 are available for young people aged 11 to 25 years for a range of activities including sporting excellence and for activities that build character, develop or improve skills and demonstrate a commitment to the community.

Applicants must live in South West Derbyshire or Duffield (eligibility is determined by postcode – a list is available on the John Weston Charitable Trust website).

The fund is administered by the Foundation Derbyshire and the grant making decisions are made by a panel of advisers.


Funding available: Up to £250
Deadlines: The programme is expected to reopen in the Autumn

ICON provides bursaries to support Derbyshire's emerging sports stars and help them meet training-related costs as they bid to reach the top.

Athletes who compete in any sport recognised by Sport England and live in Derbyshire or compete for a Derbyshire-based club can apply.

To be eligible for funding athletes must already be competing for their country or Great Britain, have won a national championship medal or be part of a recognised development squad or development squad aligned to a professional sports club.

For full details on how to apply, click here.

Talented Athletes Scholarship Scheme

Funding available: Package of services
Deadlines: Awards from October 1 to September 30

The Talented Athletes Scholarship Scheme (TASS) provides athletes with a tailored package of services worth up to £3,500 in value. These may include coaching, strength and conditioning, lifestyle support, physiology and sports medicine.

TASS support over 350 athletes aged over 16 years who are currently in education whilst competing at England Talent level in their sport.

Sport England TASS awards are annual and run from 1st October to 30th September. Nominations are made by the individual sporting national governing bodies and the core services are delivered at TASS Accredited Centres in England.

25 different sports are covered by the scheme.


Funding available: See SportsAid website for details
Deadlines: See SportsAid website for details

Young athletes, both able-bodied and those with a disability, are nominated to SportsAid for financial support by their sport's own national governing body (NGB).

At the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, 18 of Britain's 19 gold medals were won in events that involved SportsAid athletes.

SportsAid awards are generally given to athletes between the ages of 12 and 18 (older for athletes with a disability) who compete in approximately 68 different sports, including disability disciplines.

SportsAid awards help athletes with essential costs such as travel, training, accommodation, competition fees and equipment.

To find out if you could qualify for a SportsAid award, visit the SportsAid website or contact your sport's National Governing Body (NGB) directly.

Sport England's Backing the Best

Sport England has launched 'Backing The Best', a scheme that will commit £5.5 million of National Lottery funding over four years to support people who might feel competitive sport is otherwise out of their financial reach.

Backing the Best is looking to open up opportunities for young, exceptionally talented athletes in the early stages of their careers and who face the greatest financial challenges.

SportsAid, which is managing the new scheme, already supports a host of athletes facing similar challenges, including 18 year-old amateur boxer Sophie Colebourn and nine-time BMX racing champion Kye Whyte.

Paratriathlete Emily Harris has also raced her way to the top and is now England number one after learning how to ride an adapted bike for the first time – but it has been an expensive journey and Emily's mother has remortgaged their home to pay for her daughter's sport.

It is athletes of this ilk that have faced such challenges to reach the highest level that will benefit most from Backing the Best support.

SportsAid will be working with coaches and national governing bodies of sport to identify the athletes for whom an award could make a big difference.

Annual awards of up to £5,000 will be made on a case-by-case basis, specifically contributing to essential costs such as travel, accommodation, kit and support by coaches and physios.

The first awards will be made in February 2016 with up to 100 young athletes expected to benefit in the first year, rising to around 200 in subsequent years.

To find out more and get in involved, an athlete should speak to their coach and/or national governing body.

You can follow this new funding story on Twitter, using the hastag #BackingTheBest

British Gymnastics Foundation - Hardship Fund

The British Gymnastics Foundation is providing a new Hardship Grant to provide financial support to enable their members to continue to be involved in gymnastics. All current individual members can apply for hardship funding, including gymnasts, coaches and volunteers. There are four rounds each year. The closing dates are:

20th February; 20th May; 20th August; 20th November

Funding is limited to £5K in total for each funding round and requests can be for as little as £20, but grants awarded will not usually exceed £500