October 23, 2012
A new Laureus-funded report has shown that community sports projects not only successfully tackle youth crime, but can save governments’ money as well.
The new Sport Scores report, which looked at community sports projects across Europe in Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom, shows that every €1 invested in sports projects can reduce costs to society by an average €5.02.
These savings come from reducing costs to victims of crime, police and the courts.
The report looked at the Sport and Thought and Fight for Peace projects in London, the KICK Im Boxring project in Berlin and the Midnight Basketball project in Milan.
Talking recently at the Berlin-based boxing project, former champion heavyweight Axel Schulz told laureus.com: “When you’ve been involved in sport for as long as I have, you know how much good it can do. But it’s no good just going out and shouting ‘sport is great’. You need to have research like this which proves beyond doubt that sport can make a significant economic difference.”
The report is a development of last year’s Teenage Kicks report, which focussed solely on UK sports projects, that discovered equally significant savings to society stemming from investment in sports projects that tackle youth crime.
The production of Sport Scores report was co-financed by the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation and the Ecorys Research programme. Ecorys is a leading European research and consultancy company. Further support was also given by Bocconi University, Milan, the German Sport University, Cologne, the University of East London, the UK research company Substance and Professor Fred Coalter.
Commenting on these findings, Edwin Moses, the Chairman of the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, said: “When these projects work they work for us all – whether it’s a reduction in police time spent on dealing with criminal behaviour, less health care on those who are leading more healthy lives or less support for those no longer cared for by social services or the prison system. This report helps frame that bigger picture, by contributing to the growing body of evidence showcasing the social and economic returns of sport worldwide.”
Head over to our publications section where you can read the report for yourself.