The 19th annual Greater Manchester Sports Awards returned to Emirates Old Trafford on 15th November, shining a spotlight on the role sport and physical activity play in changing lives. Over 500 guests came together to celebrate the outstanding talent, hard work and passion of those who go the extra mile to deliver community grassroots sport across the city region.
Recognised for their outstanding contributions over the last 12 months, ten winners enjoyed a fantastic evening bursting with inspirational stories, including Kirsty Rowlinson-Groves, the winner of the Commitment to GM Moving award.
An expert fitness instructor Kirsty developed and led the successful CAN:Move cancer exercise referral scheme in Salford. She is now the GM Active Programme Manager for the region wide Prehab4Cancer programme. Her ‘can-do’ attitude, plus expert knowledge was crucial in the co-design and delivery of this innovative scheme. It will enable 2,000 Greater Manchester residents diagnosed with cancer to engage in physical activity for improved clinical outcomes and lifetime benefits, many of whom have been sedentary prior to participating.
Kirsty’s knowledge, experience, warmth and empathy helping them start and crucially, continue exercising throughout their cancer pathway and beyond.
Dr John Moore, Clinical Director for the Prehab4Cancer programme, who works with Kirsty said:
”Kirsty is a fantastic role model to her staff and the healthcare professionals involved in Prehab4Cancer. She has dedicated knowledge, experience, warmth and empathy to help those with a cancer diagnosis to start and crucially, continue exercising throughout their cancer pathway and beyond. Her positive attitude and tireless commitment to make the seemingly impossible, possible make her a worthy winner of this award.”
GreaterSport CEO Sara Tomkins said;
“The Greater Manchester Sports Awards celebrates the unsung sporting heroes across our region who day in day out have a positive impact on people’s lives. The event continues to grow year on year as does the breadth of heroes represented who contribute to the growing physical activity movement that is sweeping across Greater Manchester.
“I congratulate all the winners for their outstanding achievements over the last 12 months.”
There were another nine awards with finalists coming from the ten boroughs of Greater Manchester.
Caitlyn competes in Para Dressage at Gold level and became National Gold Champion in February 2019. Caitlyn represents Great Britain in 2* and 3* events, achieving 2nd place at international level this year.
Alan attended the ‘Lets Get Movin’ programme and has lost two stone over the last 12 months. He now inspires people around him to make healthier choices and volunteers at ‘Go Wild Camps’ and ‘Lets Get Movin’ sessions weekly.
A sports volunteer for several organisations, Elham has dedicated over 540 hours since September 2017.
Aidan is a swimming teacher who works with 10-16 year olds on a voluntary basis.
Roger has devoted his adult life to volunteering his time and expertise to Stockport Metro Swimming Club, local church, charities and the Cheshire County & Northern County Swimming Associations.
Solemother was established by Grace Lees in January 2017 after she couldn’t fit any other kind of exercise into her busy life as a working mum. Solemother has grown over the last year and currently has 933 members.
‘Wake up and shake’ is carried out daily, lessons are taken outside where possible and additional specialists are brought in. PE is a focus on the timetable with all classes receiving at least two hours per week.
Rochdale Borough Council supports employees to be physically active in partnership with Link4Life through a new staff wellbeing strategy, Your Workplace Wellbeing.
Rammy Men provide walking football and football sessions for men with mental health issues. The club runs casual sessions for over 80 men three days a week, it has drawn attention from the BBC News at Ten and the FA due to its unprecedented successes. The organisation came from nowhere a year ago to now providing Bury with a flagship project which is really starting to make waves nationally.
To see more details of the event, visit www.greatersport.co.uk/awards.
The campaign aims to inspire, reassure and support people to be active by showing people living with a variety of conditions – both visible and invisible – on their own journeys to being active.