Olympic star Jade Jones celebrates girl power in Manchester
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Olympic Gold Medallist Jade Jones took time out from her busy training schedule today to visit young people at the 'Girl Power' community project in Whalley Range, Manchester.
The project is one of many run by Community on Solid Ground which has recently received Lottery funding of £193,742 through the Big Lottery Fund, to improve the life opportunities and health and wellbeing of children and young people from disadvantaged communities in Manchester.
Girl Power provides weekly activity sessions for 7-18 year old girls in a range of areas including arts and crafts, sports, cookery and team building games. The project also provides a youth forum where participants can discuss issues affecting their lives and seek career advice and information on volunteering opportunities.
Jade, who won gold in Taekwondo in the 2012 summer Olympics is also the reigning Youth Olympic champion in the girls' 55 kg category, winning gold for Great Britain in 2010. She shared her inspiring story with a group of girls and led a Taekwondo session with younger members of the project.
During a tour of the project’s playing ground, Jade said: “I’ve had a great time meeting the girls at the project today – they’re all so enthusiastic about life. It’s fantastic to see that they have the opportunity to try out so many new activities and get career support with the help of National Lottery funding.
“The National Lottery has supported me throughout my career but it’s also funding community projects like this one. Inspiring the next generation and giving young people these opportunities from an early age is really important. National Lottery players should feel proud that they are changing the lives of so many people in this country.”
Majid Dar, Senior Officer at Community on Solid Ground, said: “Jade is a really inspirational figure for all the young members of our project so we’re absolutely delighted she joined us today.
We’re grateful for National Lottery funding which is helping us to keep our programmes going and support more young people to reach their goals and discover new opportunities along the way.”
Jade is one of over 1,300 National Lottery funded elite athletes. The funding allows her to compete and train full time to the highest international standards. The National Lottery invested up to £2.2 billion in London 2012, allowing our athletes, venues and volunteers to shine on the world stage. It is continuing to invest in sport at all levels, supporting the next generation of Olympians and grassroots sports projects around the country.
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Notes to Editors:
• National Lottery players raise over £35 million a week for Good Causes, more than £30 billion since the Lottery started in 1994. Over £6 billion of this has been invested in sport.
• The Big Lottery Fund, the largest distributor of National Lottery good cause funding, is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.