Nominations open for SJA ‘Sport for Social Change’ Award

Nominations are being invited for the ‘Sport for Social Change’ category at the 2022 British Sports Awards.

The Wave Project, a surf therapy charity, won the inaugural SJA Sport for Social Change Award in 2018

The award, which was initially created in conjunction with the Sport for Development Coalition in 2018, aims to highlight the amazing work of organisations across the UK that are using sport and/or physical activity to create a positive impact on local communities and individuals in need. These can be nationwide, or at local, grassroots level.

The award recognises the growing influence of the sport for development sector, which includes professional club foundations, charities, sports governing bodies, public sector and corporate social responsibility (CSR) programmes.

These organisations are tackling a wide range of important social issues such as crime and unemployment, physical and mental health and wellbeing, social exclusion and loneliness, inequality and discrimination.


SJA chairman Ashley Broadley, said: “It is more important than ever that we highlight some of the brilliant work that is being done in this sector.

“We are pleased to be able to open this award to entries again and I look forward to learning more about the projects and individuals that are using sport to tackle a range of social and environmental issues.”

Organisations, both inside and outside of sport, are now being invited to submit their applications for the award, which will be judged by a panel of experts on the following criteria:

  • Impact and reach
  • Scale and difficulty of the issue being tackled
  • Longevity and sustainability of the project
  • Resourcefulness and dedication of staff, coaches and volunteers
  • Innovation and/or collaboration
  • Monitoring and evaluation, including clarity and transparency around impact reporting

Applicants must provide an overview of no more than 300 words describing their project or ongoing work, plus a 200-word case study demonstrating the impact of the programme, for example on a specific individual or community.

To enter, complete the online form no later than 5pm on Monday 31 October. Make sure you include the name of the project and/or organisation and provide contact details, including name of contact, telephone, email, website and (if available) Twitter.

Shortlisted organisations will be invited to attend the SJA British Sports Awards ceremony which will be held in London on December 8.

The inaugural winner of the award in 2018 was the surf therapy charity, The Wave Project. In 2019, the award went to Salaam Peace (see video below), a community engagement programme that uses sport and social education to bring people together from diverse backgrounds. The award was presented by Sport England CEO Tim Hollingsworth.

Sab Bham, the founder of Salaam Peace, speaking to host Jim Rosenthal at our 2019 event

During the Covid-19 pandemic, winners were selected directly by the SJA committee but the committee is pleased to return to the previous format and is encouraging entries from across the UK’s growing sport for development sector.  

SJA Sport for Social Change award – Past Winners

  • 2018: The Wave Project
  • 2019: Salaam Peace
  • 2020: Marcus Rashford, Lou Macari, Ebony Rainford-Brent and Dons Action Group
  • 2021: The London Marathon

The entry deadline for 2022 is Monday 31 October. If you have any questions or queries, please contact

The Sport for Development Coalition is a movement of organisations working to maximise the positive social impact of sport and physical activity. For more information, visit: