Grassroots sports clubs are a vital lifeline for kids and parents alike, but with the economic burden the pandemic has put on families, many have had to withdraw their children.

Today Vivo releases new research revealing that 1 in 4 parents have withdrawn children from grassroots sports due to economic impact of Covid-19, with a further 1 in 3 considering doing this.

With over half of parents stating health (55%), building self-confidence (50%) making new friends (50%) as the primary reasons for enrolling their kids in grassroots sport, and one in five saying they’ve seen a negative impact on mental health (20%) and self-confidence (21%) as a result of withdrawing them.

Besides the cost of taking kids to grassroots sporting activities (45%), other barriers to accessing sports are facilities (32%), perception that kids need to be ‘talented’ to take part (26%) and transportation (24%).

The Robbie Savage Foundation has partnered with Vivo to support a rapid expansion of the facilities currently offered by the organisation, with view to expand its offering at current base, Macclesfield FC, and open further centres, initially in the North West region over the next few months. The Savage Foundation’s ultimate aim is to roll-out across the UK, allowing access for thousands more disadvantaged kids.

The Savage Foundation, launched in February 2021 by ex-premier league star, pundit and co-owner of Macclesfield FC, Robbie Savage, was set up to provide free access to grassroots football sessions for children aged 5 to 12 years, regardless of ability or background, and prides itself on offering sessions for those least likely to be able to attend more traditional clubs.

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