Scottish football activity club funding doubles

Football clubs and trusts across Scotland are set to receive additional funding in an effort to support children from families on low incomes.

The Extra Time Programme, a joint initiative with the Scottish Football Association, will see a jump from £2 million of funding to £4 million for this financial year from the Scottish government. 

The funding will support more free before and after school clubs, and holiday clubs for children from families on low incomes.

By giving around a projected 3,000 children each week free access to sport and other activities which wrap around the school day, the funding will help more parents to enter or sustain employment or training. 

First minister John Swinney said: “We know funding from the Extra Time Programme is enabling football clubs and trusts to provide really valuable childcare options, particularly for families from low-income households who are most at risk of living in poverty." 

He added that he will shortly set out further views on this crucial issue in Parliament.  

“Like many others, I will be supporting Scotland at Euro 2024 when it gets underway in Germany this week. 

"But the Extra Time Programme is a reminder that local football clubs are supporting communities here at home – providing valuable services beyond matchday. They understand the value of that support for local families, and they are well placed to provide crucial facilities and services.”

SFA Chief Executive Ian Maxwell commented: “We are delighted to announce this additional funding in conjunction with the Scottish Government to extend the Extra Time Programme. The benefits have been clear to see and it’s vital that we continue to offer support for families to allow children and young people to access as much physical activity as possible.

“As well as the thousands of children who will engage with the game, clubs are often the heartbeat of their local communities and it’s just as important that we offer more opportunities for parents and carers too. This programme is a great example of how impactful the power of football can be.”

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