Changing Lives Champions

In 2019 the Champions programme kicked off with a cohort of 38 people from local partners, Scottish Governing Bodies of sport and national third sector organisations who were willing to take a risk on a new programme, a new approach and a new way of thinking. 3 cohorts and over 130 Champions later, we now have a network of thought leaders who are contributing to changing lives through sport. The Champions programme recently recruited Cohort 4 which will take place over June 23-March 24.

Changing Lives is a mindset:

The Changing Lives mindset is about using sport and physical activity to intentionally bring about positive change for people and communities.

This approach supports our Sport for Life strategy which sets out the direction for sport and sportscotland. It celebrates how everyone in Scotland can benefit from sport. It sets out our commitment to inclusion underpinning everything we do, and our approach to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) brings this commitment to life. We need meaningful, intentional action to drive this change. We won't achieve this alone, and our EDI approach shows how we will play our part. Our use of the changing lives approach contributes to our EDI strategy by providing learning and development to the professional officers working with club and community organisations, to support them to achieve Active Scotland outcomes and crucially, contribute to wider outcomes.

We want sport and physical activity to deliver intentional outcomes in areas such as health, education, community development and social cohesion, with inclusion underpinning everything we do. All of this will be done through strong partnerships within and outwith the sporting sector.

The Champions Programme inspires and enables professional staff working in the clubs and communities environment within the sporting system to adopt and apply a Changing Lives approach and ultimately help clubs, Community Sport Hubs and community organisations to deliver individual and community change through sport and physical activity.

The aim of the Champions programme is to deliver increased enthusiasm, knowledge, skills, capacity, and resources so that organisations can utilise the Changing Lives approach. Key topics include:

  • The power of sport
  • Start with ‘why’
  • Managing change and how ideas spread
  • How we create change for people and communities
  • Understanding how Equality, Diversity and Inclusion underpins our work
  • What are outcomes in sport?
  • How to identify community needs
  • What does sustainability look like for us?
  • Social enterprise business models
  • Creating a logical model of how impact will be achieved
  • Implementing an evaluation and learning cycle
  • Crafting compelling stories
  • Getting ready for investment
  • Being a thought leader

For further information on the Champions programme, please contact 

Date published: 29 March 2023
Date updated: 4 August 2023


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