Today, MCC is delighted to confirm a £1m injection into the MCC Foundation (MCCF) in partnership with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), which will see game-changing investment into the hugely successful Foundation Hubs programme.
The MCCF currently has 77 Hubs throughout the United Kingdom, which offer free cricket coaching to state-educated children aged between 11 and 16. Launched in 2012, over 20,000 youngsters have been part of the programme, whilst there are approximately 3,200 players currently benefiting from free cricket coaching and matches.
With the help of MCC’s financial support of £500,000 over two years, matched by the ECB, MCCF aims to increase the number of Hubs to 150 across the next two years, with active participant numbers rising to 5,000. The current female percentage of 29% will rise to 40% in the first year, and aims for 50% in the future.
The Hubs will all have access to mentors to provide players with support and access to kit and travel bursaries, further removing barriers to access. Each of the six regions will have Springboard Programmes, which will provide the most talented players with additional coaching and visibility to the talent pathways.
All participants will be provided with life skills support including mental wellbeing guidance, nutrition advice, strength and conditioning programmes, and specific modules for girls’ health.
MCCF will also continue to develop its partnership with Take Her Lead, focusing on supporting its girls’ programme and continuing to collaborate on female mentoring to inspire their beneficiaries.
Sarah Fane, Director of MCCF, said: ˝MCCF is passionate about breaking down the barriers to accessing hardball cricket and enabling thousands of young people to fulfil their potential through the game. We are delighted to receive this transformational funding from MCC and ECB to grow our National Hub Programme, doubling its reach and enhancing its delivery and all the opportunities it offers to young people. ˝
Guy Lavender, Chief Executive and Secretary of MCC, said: ˝The National Hub Programme has been one of the real success stories from the great work that the Foundation does at home and abroad. We are pleased to partner with ECB to support and grow this brilliant project to deliver cricket to state school pupils nationwide and provide potential pathways to the elite game.”
Richard Gould, ECB Chief Executive Officer, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with the MCC Foundation to expand their work to break down barriers and ensure state school children can realise their potential as we seek to make cricket the most inclusive sport. The Foundation has been doing some outstanding work, and by working together in a targeted way, we can make more of an impact in addressing some of the challenges identified by the Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket.”