Rising shooting star Ruth Mwandumba says SportsAid funding has literally got her moving again this year and helped her afford to buy a car.
The 25-year-old is a beneficiary of Entain Holdings’ three-year partnership with SportsAid, helping young athletes across the UK realise their potential.
Athletes get funding for training, travel and equipment, as well as mentoring by Olympians and Paralympians on topics such as nutrition and sports psychology.
Mwandumba has been studying, working and competing in recent years and says SportsAid funding has helped her seize opportunities.
“It’s never been easy because there are a lot of international competitions and you have to self-fund,” says the Liverpool-born star.
“In the past I had to be selective about competitions I’d attend for financial reasons, but since receiving SportsAid funding it’s stopped me having to worry about that.
“I’ve been able to continue working and not need to work overtime to earn more money to compete overseas. It’s been a massive help.”
The young athletes will be following in the footsteps of legendary figures such as Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill, Sir Mo Farah, Dame Sarah Storey and Ellie Simmonds OBE – all of whom received SportsAid support – and more recent beneficiaries including Dina Asher-Smith and Adam Peaty MBE.
The initiative is part of Entain’s Pitching In, a major new multi-million-pound investment programme designed to support and promote grassroots sports.
Mwandumba feels SportsAid has given her a timely confidence boost as she targets the 2022 Commonwealth Games and the 2024 Olympics.
“SportsAid funding takes a massive weight off the shoulders and it’s always a helpful contribution towards the costs,” she said.
“Receiving a grant, it makes you feel good about yourself, that there are people who believe in you and your abilities.
“It’s one thing hearing it from friends, family and coaches but to have an outside organisation.
Entain is proud to be championing the next generation of British sporting heroes by providing talented young athletes with financial support and personal development opportunities in partnership with SportsAid. As part of this three-year partnership, Entain are supporting a diverse group of 50 UK athletes per year from a variety of spots and para-sports. Visit entaingroup.com to find out more.