LTA Tennis Foundation awards grants to over 40 organisations in first full year
• 4 MINUTE READ
Following its launch in 2022, the LTA Tennis Foundation has not wasted any time working towards its mission to improve lives through tennis.
In the Foundation’s first full year it has awarded grants to over 40 organisations, has continued its support of established LTA delivered programmes – LTA SERVES, LTA Youth Schools & LTA Open Court and has invested in the Parks Tennis Project to support our vision of tennis opened up by renovating thousands of public tennis courts.
This may all sound impressive - but what does it actually mean?
Let us introduce you to Max and Izzy whose lives, and the community around them, have been positively impacted because of the LTA Tennis Foundation.
Max and Izzy both attend Team Bath Tennis – a programme supported by Access Sport which has been made possible thanks to a grant from the LTA Tennis Foundation.
Max is on the autistic spectrum and Izzy has DDx3x Syndrome which leads to intellectual disability and developmental delays. The duo are best friends and have been loving their weekly sessions at Team Bath Tennis.
Max is the youngest of four brothers and has been regularly excluded from participating in the same activities as his siblings due to the pace of the sessions. However, through Team Bath Tennis, Max has found a welcoming environment where he can be active and learn new skills.
Izzy has never regularly participated in sport as she found mainstream environments to be overwhelming. Izzy’s mum said, “She wouldn’t do anything sporty or active at home because she feels foolish. She has a very low opinion of her ability”. However, as the tennis sessions focus on socialising and having fun, Izzy has started to build up her confidence and enjoy herself.
The LTA Tennis Foundation was visible at all the LTA’s major events this year, showcasing the impact of the work and raising awareness of the charity within the tennis community. A big highlight of the tournaments was being able to offer tickets to those in the LTA Tennis Foundation’s charity network
Many young people will never have experienced attending a tennis tournament, and those of you who are reading this who have, will know what an amazing day it can be. These experiences have the opportunity to inspire young people to play this incredible sport and reap the benefits.
The most recent event this happened at was the Billie Jean King Cup where Greenhouse Sports, a charity funded by the LTA Tennis Foundation to deliver tennis in underserved communities were able to take a group of young girls along to the Copperbox Arena in East London. They were able to meet British number one Katie Boulter, who signed tennis balls and posed in photos with them. This made their day.
But it is not just about tickets, it is about creating memorable and inspirational experiences. At the Rothesay Classic in Birmingham this summer, one group of young people were surprised by a visit from seven time singles Grand Slam champion and former world number one Venus Williams.
The group were given the opportunity to go on a behind the scenes tour of the entire site before peering through the lenses of a sports journalist, sitting in the press conference room and taking it in turns to sit in the hot seat. However, more surprises awaited them as former world No.3 a Elina Svitolina, joined them for a Q&A where they discussed the inner strength and power of women.
Raising awareness of community work
Another highlight from the year was the LTA Tennis Foundation sponsoring the Outstanding Contribution to Tennis award at this year's Sporting Equals Awards.
All the nominees are involved in life-changing work in their communities, however there could only be one winner – Nalette Tucker, the founder of Sunnah Sports Academy Trust took home the award. The Trust are a registered charity offering sport lessons, including tennis coaching, to communities in Bradford. She began delivering tennis sessions in a host of faith-based schools, churches, and mosques through the LTA SERVES programme.
Fundraising and Support
As a young charity, the LTA Tennis Foundation is actively looking to grow its community and work with groups and individuals to raise vital funds so we can continue to reach and improve as many lives as possible through tennis.
Thank you to all who have supported us this year, including Phoenix Tennis who ran a fancy dress Halloween fundraiser and Wortham Tennis Club who held a 12-hour Tennis-athon and a ladies charity doubles tournament.
If you have been inspired to fundraise for the foundation, get in touch with Hannah Simpson by emailing Fundraising@LTA.org.uk
To finish up, here are some numbers we hope you find inspiring...
- 7,460 £250 vouchers funded for schools, enabling teachers to purchase equipment or access coaching sessions depending on the need.
- Over 500 equipment packs funded for Open Court, to support venues deliver inclusive tennis sessions.
- Over 40 organisations awarded grants to improve lives through tennis.
- Over 500,000 people have been directly impacted by support from the LTA Tennis Foundation through 2023.
- Funded equipment packs for LTA SERVES, which is live in over 500 venues in Great Britain, making tennis accessible in underserved communities.
If you are keen to join the LTA Tennis Foundation community and keep up to date with the life-changing work they are doing, then sign up to the dedicated mailing list at the link below.