Support for the physical activity sector

Clubs and organisations all over the country are experiencing lots of challenges due to Covid-19. GreaterSport are here to help by providing tips, tools, links and ideas to help keep your club working with your members and customers!

Why is it important?

Over the last 6 weeks, we have seen radical changes in our ability to play sport, participate in physical activity and live our day to day lives. We have also seen an incredible response from many local, regional and national organisations stepping up to support the country to keep moving. For the volunteers, coaches and organisers we want make it easy for you to access the best of the support that's available in a way that will meet the varying needs of all the activity that happens across Greater Manchester.

We understand that we are all facing similar challenges and have similar needs, but we realise that the way in which we can approach these will be unique to all. We are all at different stages, within different sports involved with different people but we want to help the community to assess where they are and address the needs accordingly.

We are seeing a lot key staff who support physical activity and sport across Greater Manchester change roles in order meet the pressing needs of Covid-19 and we see our role to connect and support one another across all sports and boroughs.

Our Offer

Our offer is to signpost you to support and provide you with the ability to ask questions and get responses from the right people. If we don’t have the immediate answers, we will find out who does and help you get the responses you need. We have the knowledge and understanding of the sector and we will utilise the relationships we have nationally and locally to get you the support you need.

If, after reading the information provided on this page you require further support, please do contact us using the form at the bottom of this page.

Funding support

  • Sport England have announced a £195 million package to help the sport and physical activity through coronavirus. The money will help their partners, clubs and community organisations cope with the short and long-term impact of the pandemic. This fund includes;
    - A £20 million Community Emergency Fund for clubs and community organisations to bid for grants between £300 and £10,000.
    - A £5 million pot for existing partners.
    - £55 million will be released to fund new and innovative ways to keep people active and, when the period of restrictions is over, to help organisations get back to business and adjust to a different environment.
    Find out more, and how to apply for funding online here.
  • Forever Manchester is offering awards of up to £5,000 for community groups based across Greater Manchester who are supporting their communities. Find out more about the Community Support Fund and how you can apply here.
  • The Charity Excellence Framework has a free Covid-19 funder database. It’s searchable, using multiple criteria, with 545 funders. If you’re not yet a member you can register here, it takes 2 minutes and everything is free. You can also watch this tutorial to help you access the database.
  • Sport-specific support:
    - The England and Wales Cricket Board have set up an emergency support programme for their clubs – Find it here.
    - The Lawn Tennis Association have set up a Covid-19 support package – Find it here.
    - The RFU have set up a £7 million support package for community clubs in England – Find it here

Business support

  • The Sport and Recreation Alliance have summarised the financial support measures introduced by the Chancellor at last week's briefing. This includes guidance for those who are eligible for business rates relief including sports grounds and clubs, sport and leisure facilities and gyms and support for the self-employed. Read the information here.
  • The Federation of Small Businesses have collated a range of advice and guidance for small businesses and the self-employed including answering frequently asked questions and actions you can take. View the information here.
  • The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has created guidance and resources to support charities, voluntary organisations and volunteers during the covid-19 pandemic. Access the support here.
  • The GC Business Growth Hub are helping businesses across Greater Manchester navigate the latest government information and provide specialist advice. Find out more about what they can offer, including calls with advisors here.
  • CIMSPA have created Stronger Together’ an online information hub that includes sector specific updates, practical advice and support offers from sector organisations. These support offers include free and discounted services and products to help support the sport and physical activity sector – Find it here. They are also running weekly Facebook webinars to share the latest sector insight while also featuring specialist to discuss the issues and how they can be overcome – Find it here.

Marketing Support


We have launched the campaign #KeepGMMoving to encourage everyone across the city region to keep moving. We've compiled a number of ways that you can keep moving online here. Share the work you're doing to keep your communities moving using the campaign hashtag, #KeepGMMoving, working together we will help keep Greater Manchester moving. If you want to help to #KeepGMMoving, you can access the free resource bank here with images and social posts.

Join The Movement

Sport England are doing a large amount of work to support the sector through this pandemic. View the full range of work happening here.

As part of their support, Sport England have created the Join The Movement campaign, to encourage people to keep moving whilst staying at home. They are compiling and sharing tips, advice and guidance on how people can move more in and around their homes. Share the work you are doing to keep people moving using the campaign hashtag, #StayInWorkOut.

Inclusive and Accessible Communications

Effective marketing and communications are essential and we are all working in new creative ways so we can reach and inform more people, including those with disabilities and with long-term health conditions. That’s why the key principles for inclusive and accessible communications are important to ensure your messages reach everyone. Activity Alliance have created a guide to support you to do this. Access it here.

Support for Clubs and Coaches

  • Club Matters is here to help by giving you some tips, tools and ideas to help keep your club functioning and working with your members and customers! Support with:
    - Bookable Online Virtual Workshops, express your interests by contacting us on the form below
    - Free to join Webinars and Workshops - find out more here.
    - Case Studies - What are other clubs and organisations are doing?
  • Sport Structures are offering a range of support, including a host of online courses through their Education in Isolation programme - Find their full offer here.
  • Activity Alliance have shared the top ways to adapt activities to be inclusive of both disabled and non-disabled people so more people can stay in and work out. The STEP tool is one of the most effective ways to use household items to be active. See how you can adapt your activities here.
  • The NSPCC are offering safeguarding advice and support for remote teaching and coaching. Access the support here.
  • UK Coaching have set up a forum that aims to support coaches to connect and work from home. There you will find all the latest news for coaching around available support, safeguarding and ongoing discussion – Find it here.
  • Curious Coaches Club - Launched by UK Coaching where each week they will be holding a conversation about a particular coaching topic that is important to coaches and one that many would like to learn more about. Find out more and join the conversations here.
  • Mind are running a webinar on 21st May to upskill sport and physical activity organisations and workforce to better support and engage people with mental health problems in being active. Register for free here.

Examples of how clubs are coping and engaging with their members during this time

Tips for the self employed

  • Take your classes online using video conferencing software like Zoom or Facebook / Instagram Live. This could offer a great chance to grow awareness of your business as more people look to digital opportunities to exercise.
  • Try providing time and space before / after the workout session to allow people to socialise online, for example, offering 15 mins on Zoom pre and post activity for chat
  • If you are charging for your digital sessions, consider discounts for other self employed people, as they need support too but ask those that are employed and still being paid to pay full price to help support local self employed people.
  • Activity Alliance have shared the top ways to adapt activities to be inclusive of both disabled and non-disabled people so more people can stay in and work out. The STEP tool is one of the most effective ways to use household items to be active. See how you can adapt your activities here.

Support for the swimming industry

Swim England have collated advice and resources for those working within the swimming industry, including dryside resources. View their guidance here.

Local support across Greater Manchester


Bolton Community and Voluntary Services are providing local support including grants of up £1,000 for community groups.


Bury Voluntary, Community and Faith Alliance are exploring ways in which the VCF sector and volunteers in Bury can support local health and social care. Find out more here.


The MCRactive team are offering support across all club and workforce issues and are currently contactable on [email protected] for any support enquiries, so please do get in touch.

Manchester Community Central are supporting charities, community groups, voluntary organisations and social enterprises including sending out regular bulletins. Access their support here. They are also coordindating a Covid-19 Community Volunteering programme operating across Manchester, to ensure support is in place to care for people and communities during the pandemic. They're asking for local groups to get in touch here and let them know what your needs are to support the coordination of local volunteers.


Action Together is committed to providing support, information and guidance to voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise (VCFSE) organisations around COVID-19 (coronavirus). Access the support here.


Action Together is committed to providing support, information and guidance to voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise (VCFSE) organisations around COVID-19 (coronavirus). Access the support here.


Salford CVS are collating the support and services from people and organisations across Salford to support the community groups who need it most. Access the resources here.


We are currently researching to find the best support local to Stockport community groups and residents. If you are aware of such support, please email [email protected]


The Tameside Sport and Physical Activity Network and Active Tameside are still operating and offering support to local clubs during Covid-19. Head to their website here or get in touch by emailing: [email protected]

Action Together is committed to providing support, information and guidance to voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise (VCFSE) organisations around COVID-19 (coronavirus). Access the support here.


Thrive Trafford are collating Guidance for Voluntary, Community, Social Enterprise (VCSE) and Faith organisations which can be found here.

They have also collated information on how you can give help or receive help which can be found here.


Wigan Borough Community Partnership are collating support and advice for small charities and volunteers which can be found here.

Contact Us

If you need further support for your club or community group during these difficult times, please contact us using the form below.

Please provide as much detail as possible so we can provide you with the support you need as quickly as possible