Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games launch new community programme

United by Birmingham 2022 is bringing together community projects in support of the Games.

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games had launched its new community programme, United by Birmingham 2022.

The United by Birmingham 2022 programme is bringing together ambitious and innovative West Midlands based community projects that share a common purpose with the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

United by Birmingham 2022 is recognising grass-roots organisations that are having a positive impact on the communities they serve across a diverse range of subjects. This includes, but is not limited to, projects that aim to improve skills, offer training, provide volunteering resources, benefit the environment, encourage participation in sport, or deliver youth engagement activities.

To mark Wednesday’s launch, over forty representatives from twelve local charities and social enterprises are coming together in Oozells Square, Brindley Place in Birmingham city centre to take part in a 5km United by Birmingham 2022 run.

The run is being led by Team England gold-medal-winning athlete and United by Birmingham 2022 official ambassador, Ama Agbeze. It is facilitated by GoodGym, a UK-wide community of runners that combines getting fit with doing good deeds. Together, representatives from the founding 12 United by Birmingham 2022 projects will run along Birmingham’s canals, carrying out a litter pick to ensure that the canal network is clean.

The United by Birmingham 2022 programme is now open for not-for-profit organisations to apply to. Projects will be awarded the United by Birmingham 2022 status if they can demonstrate how they share a common purpose with Birmingham 2022. The programme will enable projects that align with the ambitions of Birmingham 2022 to be recognised for the work they are doing and use the new community programme logo in their communications and at events to amplify their activity.

The United by Birmingham 2022 programme recognises non-commercial community projects that are aligned with the vision and mission of the Games. These are:

· To bring people together

· Improve health and wellbeing

· Help the region to grow and succeed

· Be a catalyst for change

· Put the region on the map.

The run will conclude at disability charity Sense’s TouchBase Pears centre in Selly Oak where the attendees will take part in a chair yoga session. Those who don’t run will join World Against Single Use Plastic (WASUP) on a litter pick.

The twelve founding projects of United by Birmingham 2022 programme are:

Goodgym – Group Sessions – During group sessions, GoodGym members run to visit isolated, older people, to provide friendly contact and to help with practical tasks.
The Prince’s Trust – Youth Summit 2021 – Using the United by Birmingham programme to support the 2021 Youth Summit, which hopes to increase engagement with young people across the region.
Canal & River Trust – Community Activity and Wellbeing Programme – This programme provides free events and taster sessions in fishing, performing, running, walking, cycling and paddling and works with partners to ensure regular physical activity takes place.
· EmployabilityUK – Inspiring Young Birmingham programme, which will recruit new volunteers and provide consistent training and online support for young people.

Sense, – Connecting communities programme which will help the Sense TouchBase Pears Centre become a centre of excellence for disability arts.
Jericho Foundation – awarded for their Equiano project which helps raise awareness of their cause and encourages people to support their work
Sport Birmingham – supporting the Daily Mile Commonwealth Challenge, to amplify their influence and encourage more people to take up this challenge.
Acorns Children’s Hospice, – for the Gift of Time programme which helps emphasise the urgency and immediacy of the need for communities to rally together for the greater good.
Bringing Hope, has been awarded the United by Birmingham mark for two projects – Food Taste and Talk Pots and their‘Sports and Talk Spot events
Witton Lodge Community Association – has been awarded the United by Birmingham mark for their Perry Common Games events, to improve health, wellbeing and community relations in the local area.
World Against Single Use Plastic – Schools Engagement Canal clean-up programme, a project that helps to make the local environment better
Compass Support – sporting development programme, to promote and celebrate their intergenerational activities that reduce isolation and encourage an increase in physical activity.

Nigel Huddleston, Minister for Sport, Tourism and Heritage, said: “It is fantastic that the United by Birmingham 2022 community programme is launching today. On my visit to Birmingham and Sandwell last week I saw the real enthusiasm and excitement that is building towards 2022. This initiative presents a great opportunity for community organisations from across the West Midlands and beyond to connect with the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and boost awareness of their projects.

“Improving the health and wellbeing of people of all ages is at the heart of our mission for the Games, so I am delighted that many of the founding projects for United by Birmingham 2022 will help to make this ambition become a reality.”

John Crabtree, Chair of Birmingham 2022, said: “United by Birmingham 2022 is a unique opportunity for us to team up with not-for-profit organisations who are doing amazing things in their communities, through projects that are aligned to our vision and mission for the Games. By working together, we hope to shine a light on each and every one of our United by Birmingham 2022 projects and empower them through the Games.

“Bringing our founding projects together to launch United by Birmingham 2022 shows the wonderful things that can be achieved by working together, and we hope to inspire more organisations to sign up to become a United by Birmingham 2022 project and benefit from the Games.”

Ama Agbeze, Team England athlete and Official United by Birmingham 2022 Ambassador commented: “As a local person and proud ambassador for United by Birmingham 2022 I’ve loved being part of the launch and I am excited to spend time with the projects to learn more about what they do and unlock the ways that we can work together to achieve common goals as we prepare for Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.”

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will bring athletes, officials, spectators and local people together in a unique celebration of sport, culture and business, creating growth and positive change in Birmingham the wider West Midlands.

For more information about United by Birmingham 2022 or to submit your project application please visit: