Entain Plc has extended its long-term partnership with sports charity SportsAid, with the aim of providing funding to young Team GB athletes at the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
As a result of the extension, the FTSE 100 company will double its financial backing for SportsAid, taking its total financial commitment to £500,000 by Paris 2024, having so far distributed more than 150 athlete awards for sponsorship and event fundraising.
The renewal of the partnership – first formed in 2018 – follows Entain’s renewal of its support for the Pitching In grassroots football initiative, a multi-million pound partnership which the company has been involved in since December 2020.
Grainne Hurst, Group Director of Corporate Affairs at Entain, said: “Following the incredible performance from British athletes at this year’s Olympic Games and the Paralympics getting under way in Tokyo, we are delighted to extend our SportsAid partnership for a further three years.
“Our collaboration with SportsAid is a huge source of pride for everyone at Entain and plays a pivotal role in supporting the next generation of British sporting heroes.”
As well as providing financial assistance, Entain and SportsAid will also work to supply personal development opportunities and recognition to athletes, such as workshops providing advice on topics such as nutrition, mental wellbeing and media relations.
Previous beneficiaries of the Entain-SportsAid partnership include Tokyo 2020 Olympic BMX gold medalist and 2021 Supercross World title winner Bethany Shriever.
Tim Lawler, CEO of SportsAid, added: “Entain’s extended commitment will take us all the way up to the Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2024 and comes at a very important time for talented young athletes – particularly following a challenging period over the last 18 months.
“Our partnership with Entain has continued to evolve year-on-year and the well-rounded support provided to these aspiring young sports stars gives them added confidence and motivation to pursue their ambitions. We have also seen an increased awareness of SportsAid and a much wider audience is hearing the stories behind the next generation of sporting heroes.”
Of the SportsAid alumni, 48 representing Team GB have received financial support from the charity since Rio 2016, and its athletes won 46 medals across 20 sports at the recent Tokyo Olympics. Meanwhile, 165 of the 227 Paralympics GB team members at the latest games received financial support from SportsAid during their careers.
“Talented young athletes need the right support, at the right time, to help them fulfil their potential and ultimately achieve their ambitions,” remarked Danny Crates, a Paralympic gold and bronze medallist and SportsAid ambassador.
“SportsAid has maintained a crucial presence across British sport over the last 45 years – playing an important role in the country’s international success throughout that time.”