The Sports Council for Wales (known by its trade name Sport Wales) was established by Royal Charter dated 4th February 1972. We are financed by annual funding from the Welsh Government and from income generated from its own activities. We are the main adviser on sporting matters to the Welsh Government and is responsible for distributing Welsh Government and National Lottery funding to sport in Wales.
Sport Wales is the national organisation responsible for developing and promoting sport and physical activity in Wales at both community and elite levels. We are also responsible for the distribution of significant amounts of grant funding across a broad portfolio of sports activity in Wales.
The Vision for Sport in Wales
The Vision for Sport in Wales is to create an active nation where everyone can have a lifelong enjoyment of sport. To do this we understand that we must create a sport system that responds to the needs of the individual at different stages of their lives and focuses upon creating a wide range of positive experiences so everyone can take part and enjoy. We are committed to developing an active, healthy and successful Wales, where every citizen from every community can participate in sport and physical recreation and reach their potential, irrespective of background and circumstance.
Our latest strategy was created to embrace the Vision for Sport in Wales. It was developed with the help of people from every part of Wales and focuses our efforts on enabling sport in Wales to thrive. We are committed to learn together, deliver together and celebrate together by acting with integrity, adding value and encouraging innovation. Through this strategy, we will be giving every young person a great start, showcasing the benefits of sport for all.
Our funded bodies
Sport Wales currently invests annually into approximately 70 funded bodies. These bodies broadly fall into the categories of National Governing Bodies of sport (NGBs), National Partners (Streetgames, Youth Sport Trust) and Local Authorities / Sport Partnerships. Each of these organisations receive annual investment as a funded body and will work through Sport Wales’ Capability Framework, evidencing against a number of governance requirements. This investment is split between Welsh Government funding and National Lottery investment – supporting both community and elite areas of sport.
These funded bodies form the foundations of Sport Wales delivering the Vision For Sport. They work with communities in Wales to ensure that sport and recreation opportunities are available for all to have a lifelong enjoyment in sport.
Alongside these funded bodies, Sport Wales has an array of community investment and additional investment avenues which enables Sport to Thrive (for example, Crowdfunder, Be Active Wales Fund).
Why we support good governance
Good governance has been shown to be a powerful catalyst for change and a driver of improved organisational performance, regardless of size or structure. In a well-governed organisation, governance elements underpin everything the organisation does and how it does it. It is about being the very best organisation you can be.
By supporting good governance across our funded bodies, we are working to ensure everyone who wishes to participate in sport in Wales, can do so in a safe, accountable and inclusive environment.
As a public body, we also need to protect public investment, supporting our funded bodies’ governance promotes this. Sport and recreation governing bodies and our national partners must make certain that they are fit for purpose, provide value for money and adhere to good governance via our Capability Framework.
Supporting organisations towards sustaining good governance can lead to many further positive benefits for our funded bodies, including:
- Evidence informed decision making
- Better Performance Management
- Enhanced Diversity & Inclusivity
- Clear Accountability
- Increased responsiveness
- Greater Innovation & Entrepreneurial Drive
- Improved Stakeholder Engagement
- Higher Quality Collaboration
Why we are supporting the SGA
Sport Wales is committed to supporting our partners in their continuous improvement within good governance, so they are best prepared to achieve their potential. This support has been recently developed by the creation of our Governance and Leadership Expert Panel, from which expert consultants both proactively and reactively support our partners with their governance development needs.
In addition to this support, by collaboratively linking with the SGA and the other home nations, Sport Wales hopes to be a part of raising the bar in governance support across the sporting landscape. SGA has a proven record of high-quality, in-depth learning support and resources in which all partners will be able to benefit from.
We hope in building our relationship with SGA, Sport Wales partners benefit from the knowledge, skills and experience the organisation provides, alongside the ability to collaborate and learn together across home nations.
The support which the SGA provides will support Sport Wales partners in delivering against the Vision For Sport - to become an active nation where everyone can have a lifelong enjoyment of sport.
Sport Wales says:
“The sporting landscape has undergone huge changes in recent years, with the importance of sport being a place where everyone feels welcome, safe and develops a lifelong enjoyment being central to this. Governance offers a tool in which culture, ethics and integrity are underpinned in continuous improvement towards better behaviours.
Good governance is at the heart of an organisation’s ability to thrive and, with sport being all about people, we particularly advocate the important role of ‘soft’ governance – culture, behaviours, values, and ethics.
We are delighted to be working with the other sports councils and the Sports Governance Academy as it provides an exciting opportunity for sharing challenges and solutions whilst simultaneously providing additional governance support for the sector in Wales.”
Neil Emberton, Governance, Ethics and Integrity Lead