How Mum’s Team is getting more women in Yorkshire involved in sports

PUBLISHED: 00:00 22 June 2017 | UPDATED: 12:02 22 June 2017

Mums� Team member Rashida Salloo at the launch of the charity partnership at Batley Cricket Club

Mums� Team member Rashida Salloo at the launch of the charity partnership at Batley Cricket Club

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Women in West and South Yorkshire prove they are good sports

Yorkshire Sport Foundation�s magnificent Mums� Team in action. Go on, girls!Yorkshire Sport Foundation�s magnificent Mums� Team in action. Go on, girls!

Mums are marvellous – we all know that. But mums can be even more impressive when they’re on the move: playing sport, working out and generally getting a bit of a glow on.

With this in mind, Yorkshire Sport Foundation has teamed up with one of the UK’s biggest charity partnerships to promote Mums’ Team, an empowering project to get more women in West and South Yorkshire involved in physical activity and sports leadership.

They’re being offered free courses to give them the skills and knowledge they need to lead their friends and local community in physical activity and to support their children through sport. So far, 70 women have achieved qualifications in sports including running and badminton, and 15 are now district mentors working with other aspiring leaders and coaches.

The next stage of the collaboration between Yorkshire Sport Foundation and the National Charity Partnership (comprising Diabetes UK, the British Heart Foundation and Tesco) has now been officially launched at Batley Cricket Club, with the aim of increasing the number of mentors to 30 while ensuring a further 55 women gain coaching qualifications.

Yasmin Hassan from Batley is just one of the women to benefit from the initiative. She was looking for something to get involved in after her son started school.

‘It was the right time for me,’ she said. ‘I already had an interest in keeping fit and helping others stay active, and the name of the project – Mums’ Team – really inspired me to get involved. I like the idea of being active with other women and with other mums.

‘Before this, there wasn’t really anything else for Asian women to get involved in. A number of us wanted to play and get involved in sport and physical activity but we had nowhere to go. This is a great way to get involved and be a part of something.’

Yasmin and her fellow mums have been able to try out a lot of different sports and activities, including football, rounders and netball, in an informal, fun, encouraging atmosphere.

‘There’s never any pressure and it doesn’t matter if you don’t know all the rules,’ she explained. ‘Mums’ Team is really welcoming and open to all. There are no barriers and it’s just good fun.’

Yasmin is now fit, healthy and ready to encourage others to put on their trainers.

‘I won’t stop until my mum comes to the group,’ she said. ‘I’m also encouraging my daughter and her friends to take part. It’s important to share the message that it only takes one person to start something. My daughter and her friends joined in with us for some rounders and now they are asking for netball sessions; it’s great to see it growing.’

There are currently not enough female coaches to provide sporting chances for women across West and South Yorkshire but, according to Nigel Harrison, CEO of Yorkshire Sport Foundation, Mums’ Team ‘will help right that wrong’.

Alex Davis, head of prevention for the National Charity Partnership, was also full of praise for the pioneering project: ‘The Yorkshire team work tirelessly in the local community to encourage people to get their hearts pumping and bodies moving. Mums’ Team, in particular, is a great – and easy – way to help women get regular exercise in a way that suits them.

‘Type 2 diabetes and heart and circulatory disease affect millions of people, but are all largely preventable. We know that being physically active can reduce the likelihood of people developing these conditions, so we are delighted to be working with Mums’ Team to give women and their families in South and West Yorkshire the opportunity to look after their long-term health.’

To find out more about Yorkshire Sport Foundation and Mums’ Team, visit yorkshiresport.org/mumsteam

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