Agenda item


            The Committee considered the undernoted report:


“1.0      Purpose of Report or Summary of main Issues


1.1       To advise Committee of progress with the Stadia Community Benefits Initiative (SCBI) for 2022/2023 and provide an update on the action plan.


2.0       Recommendations


2.1       The Committee is asked to 


·        Note progress to date.


3.0       Main report


3.1       The Council has been undertaking the Leisure Transformation Programme to renew its Leisure facilities across the City. This Programme has been influenced by the Partnership opportunities presented by the NI Executive Stadia Programme.


3.2       The Council, Department for Communities (DfC) and the Irish Football Association (IFA) have recognised the opportunities presented by the Stadia Programme, have committed to work together to maximise these benefits, and have agreed to establish a Stadium Community Benefits Initiative as part of the Belfast Community Benefits Initiative (‘the Project’) to implement and deliver agreed objectives including promoting equality, tackling poverty, and tackling social exclusion within the Belfast area.


3.3       In March 2016 the Council, DfC and IFA signed an agreement which sets out their respective commitments to the project. As other major stadia are developed in Belfast it is anticipated that other sports governing bodies shall become parties to the agreement. At its April 2018 meeting, People and Communities committee agreed that Council would work with the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) within the Stadia Community Benefits Initiative and recognised their significant planned investment in Gaelic Games in the city to support their Gaelfast strategy. GAA activities became fully incorporated into the action plan at the start of financial year 2019-2020, with Gaelfast staff imbedded into the governance structure at Communications Board, Delivery Board, Policy and Performance Board.


3.4       The agreement is for a period of ten years with financial commitment from Council and IFA in place to the end of March 2026. Delivery is managed through monthly meetings of the Delivery Board, which reports quarterly to the Policy and Performance Board. Financial and performance reports will be presented to Council and other partners’ Boards as necessary.


3.5       The Policy & Performance Group is responsible for agreeing the Benefits Realisation Plan and associated annual targets. Work was undertaken to ensure the end benefits/outcomes are aligned to partners’ strategies. To measure the progress of this the Council and the IFA have developed a range of indicators/intermediate benefits which are monitored through programme delivery:


a.      Number of coaching sessions provided

b.     Number of coaches engaged in delivering coaching

c.      Number of sessions improving club governance

d.     Number of volunteering opportunities

e.      Participation opportunities for under 16s

f.       Female participation rates

g.     Number of people completing skills development programme

h.     Number of sessions for under-represented groups

i.       Number of sessions for school and youth groups

j.       Community group usage of stadia

k.      Number of clubs attaining club-mark

l.       Educational opportunities

m.    Number of programmes targeting ASB

n.     Improved collaborative working

o.     Number of disabled participants

p.     Number of older people participating


3.6       Following the completion of a baseline assessment in early 2017, annual workplans are developed each year. The Action Plan for 2022-2023 has been produced by the partners and includes a mixture of sports specific programmes (e.g. National Governing Body specific coach education) and some joint collaborative initiatives delivered by both sporting codes such as information webinars which proved highly successful within the previous Covid environment which restricted in-person workshops


3.7       Performance


            As we continue to emerge from Covid Restrictions, programme delivery to date in Q1 of year 6 (financial year 2022/2023) has begun strongly and details of the IFA and GAA specific activities are included at appendix 1 and appendix 2. 


            Joint initiatives are planned for Q3 and Q4 and include sports nutrition courses, club funding, female coaching, club ethos, mental health first aid, collaborative delivery in schools.


3.6       Financial and Resource Implications


            In accordance with the Council’s obligations under its DfC Funding Agreement for the Olympia Regeneration Project, the Council has committed a sum of £100,000 per annum for a minimum of ten years, so that a minimum of £1,000,000 is contributed in total to the Project. In relation to 2022/23 Q1 spend, partners have reported a normal level of spend in line with programmes delivered. Partners have projected full utilisation of the budget across both


            joint and individual work programmes and it is assumed that additional budget will be sought to cover activities planned and the expansion of projects to be delivered.


3.7       Equality or Good Relations Implications/

            Rural Needs Assessment


            There are no additional impacts related to this report.”


            The Committee noted the update.


Supporting documents: