It’s time to “Mat Talk” the nation!
The Mental Health Collective and SportCheer England are inviting Cheerleading teams across the country to join in the next round of #KindnessBy Post and cheer on our nation during the lockdown!
#KindnessbyPost is a national kindness exchange; sign up to post a card or letter with a message of encouragement to someone else in the UK, and in turn someone will be allocated to send some encouragement back to you!
Our nation needs some encouragement during this challenging time, and who better to do that, than the nation’s cheerleaders?!
This is a fun activity for teams to take part in over lockdown. Once athletes have registered to take part, you could even organise an online card writing session with your team and use it to initiate conversations about mental health with your athletes.
Go to https://mentalhealthcollective.org.uk/kindness-by-post/ to sign up and spread some cheer!
The deadline for registration is 5th July 2020.
LGTBQ+ resources for clubs
Cheerleading clubs can provide a space for young people to feel safe and supported, but like any other youth setting, young people can also feel the pressure to conform to their peers. As coaches and gym owners our responsibility is to make sure all our athletes feel welcome, supported and free to express themselves, their sexuality and gender identity, without fear.
SportCheer England have put together some resources to help you make your Cheerleading club more welcoming, inclusive, and accessible:
- Stonewall – Top Tips for LGBT inclusion in sport https://www.stonewall.org.uk/top-tips-lgbt-inclusion-sport
- Stonewall Sports Toolkit https://www.stonewall.org.uk/system/files/rl-sports-toolkit.pdf
- Club Matters – Guide to inclusivity https://www.sportenglandclubmatters.com/club-people/members-participants/inclusivity/
- Sport England – LGBT+ information for sports clubs including resources https://www.sportengland.org/know-your-audience/demographic-knowledge/lgbt
- SportandDev.org – LGBTQ+ inclusion in sports https://www.sportanddev.org/en/article/news/lgbtq-inclusion-sports
SportCheer England statement of support for black cheerleading coaches, gym owners, athletes, event producers and our wider community:
The recent injustices related to the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Aubrey and Breonna Taylor have led to a groundswell of movement aiming to dismantle racist systems. SportCheer England believe black lives matter, and stand in solidarity with black cheerleading coaches, gym owners, athletes, event producers and our wider community. We also recognise that simply changing our logo, or releasing a statement of support is an empty gesture, unless it is a catalyst for real change.
We recognise the current lack of diversity on our board and in our sport, and acknowledge that this needs to change if we are to create an inclusive National Governing Body that represents, supports and welcomes everybody.
Over the next few months we intend to look at practical and effective ways we can shape our policies to reflect and embrace a culture of diversity and inclusion. As a first step we have this week engaged an experienced Diversity and Inclusion advisor (Alicia Wedderburn-Graham) to work with the board.
We also intend to reach out to our BIPOC and BAME athletes and coaches (as well as other underrepresented groups, to make sure that we are working in a way that promotes intersectionality) to listen and learn from them, how we can best serve them within the sport.
These times are all too familiar. We recognise that not speaking about this sooner is hurtful. We will do better. We support all black athletes, their families, coaches, gym owners and the wider black community.
We see you and we hear you. We stand with you.
It’s important to us that this statement isn’t just centred around whiteness or doing things in places that are “easy to change”, but that the commitment is to anti-racism in the lives of all SportCheer board members in and outside of cheer. Over the coming months we will commit to the research and practical outworking of that personal commitment, as well as the implementation of our commitment within the NGB.
Alicia has also recommended some useful Instagram accounts to follow:
For the latest statements from SportCheer England regarding COVID-19, please see the Coronavirus Statements page. Further information is available from the SportCheer England Coronavirus Information Hub.
Please see the following newsletter for an update on developments at SportCheer England over the past few months: May 2020 SportCheer England newsletter
The following information is now available on the Financial Support during COVID-19 page:
- A recording of the SportCheer England & Scrutton Bland financial advice webinar and a document containing Q&A.
- An update on Sport England funding.
SportCheer England have released a statement regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus): Coronavirus Statement
Please see the following newsletter outlining all that SportCheer England have been working on these past few months: November 2019 update newsletter
Board members have been voted on by members of the SportCheer England mailing list (join at firstname.lastname@example.org). The Chair of the Board has been appointed by the At Large Directors.
Board members will serve a 2 year term.
Please see the following statement from SportCheer UK regarding Worlds 2020: Worlds 2020 Announcement
Following the deadline for the SCE Regional Board Representative vote we are pleased to announce that the following candidates were successfully elected:
- East Midlands & East of England – Anna Mead
- South West & South East, inclusive of London – Robert Horton
- West Midlands & North West – Jane Wood
- Yorkshire, Humber & North East – Lisa-Marie Trory
I am sure you will join us in congratulating our new Regional Representatives. More information will follow once we have finalised all board positions. Thank you!
SportCheer England was aware of incidents at Worlds 2019 involving two athletes on Team England ParaCheer Adaptive Abilities, and took appropriate action. Appropriate information sharing has taken place with the relevant programmes (one being Northern Vipers), and we can confirm that upon finding out this information, the coaches have suspended the persons in question with immediate effect, pending investigation. We commend these coaches for their quick response to the issues involved. They have demonstrated a balanced and proactive approach to child protection. We are satisfied that the programmes involved have acted appropriately, and have the welfare of their athletes as their paramount consideration.