MOST INNOVATIVE BUSINESS RESPONSE TO COVID 19 – UK
British Martial Arts & Boxing Association (BMABA)
BMABA worked relentlessly throughout the pandemic undertaking a number of industry-firsts to secure the long term survival of more than 30,000 grassroots martial artists. From funding membership and insurance continuity for clubs and issuing grants to help instructors restart teaching, through to the set up and launch of 6 industry-specific companies to support the financial future of the Fighting Chance Foundation, BMABA have enabled more than 6,500 clubs and more than 30,000 participants to remain engaged with martial arts training at a grassroots level during the worst crisis the industry has seen since World War II. We supported our instructors from day one with the industry’s first COVID Aware Qualification for martial arts. Our online toolkits and information centres provided the latest technology for live online teaching, and the latest interpretation of Government rules. We also campaigned for more representation of independent martial arts clubs in the easing of lockdown rules and successfully authorised an interim Return to Play policy that facilitated the safe return of thousands of unrepresented styles and disciplines without NGB support. All of our clubs are self-funded, as is the association who provided all financial support to our members entirely at our own cost.
Professional Darts Corporation
With competitive sport brought to a halt by lockdown in March 2020, the PDC utilised its unique position to create the PDC Home Tour as an innovative, flexible and valuable tournament at a time when there was no other live sport being broadcast.
Staged across 43 nights from April-June, over 100 PDC Tour Card Holders competed in the Home Tour from their living rooms, kitchens and purpose-built practice areas across the globe, initially in 32 groups before the winners progressed to a second phase to challenge for the title.
Free live streaming for registered users to the PDCTV service attracted a record audience for a streamed event on the platform with more than 1.9 million users tuning in, and the product was also sold to broadcasters and bookmakers worldwide and sponsored by Unibet and Low6.
The influx of registered users to PDCTV during that period grew the PDC’s database by 72%, bringing a significant potential new audience to the sport upon its resumption in live arenas.
St George’s Park
With the country in lockdown and no international football taking place between November 2019 and September 2020, the National Football Centre at St George’s Park – home to all England teams and elite sport training camps – came grinding to a halt with all high-performance training camps, corporate events and leisure business ceasing During this period of uncertainty – before the mass vaccination roll-out had commenced – and ahead of international football’s return in November 2020 after a 10-month hiatus, the venue had to quickly redefine its operating procedures and create a bio-secure environment that mitigated the risk of Covid-19 transmission during training, match play and camp life The implementation of a Covid Advisory Group England (CAGE), reimagined external visitor protocols, the establishment of a dedicated testing centre on site and the introduction of leading hygiene programme at it’s on site accommodation where amongst the preventative measures taken that delivered a transformative impact and enabled the venue to flourish, despite the pandemic Due to the best-in-class guidance and infrastructure that was initiated SGP successfully hosted 80 elite sport training camps between September 2020 and June 2021, in addition to hosting the England men’s senior team for the duration of EURO
A team of 24 Trivandi staff spent 10 months working with NHS Test and Trace, leading and designing a programme to enable spectators to get back into venues during the Covid-19 pandemic. The objective was to pilot the use rapid LFD testing as a passport for entry, along with a number of Covid safe measures, to reduce the risk of spread of the virus at events.
Trivandi worked alongside DCMS to deliver the testing programme for events, the Event Research Programme, which provided the evidence that built confidence in Government to allow increased spectator capacity at sport events.
Whilst working for NHS Test and Trace, Trivandi pivoted to support the operations and logistical roll out of testing at Universities, Schools and essential workers. Team Trivandi delivered 250,000 test kits to elite sport, enabling athletes to return to training, leagues to continue and sport staff to be tested.
Trivandi developed a Guidebook and distributed it for free to the sports industry, drawing on their knowledge gained whilst working on the Events Research Programme as well as their experience as lead advisors to the organisers of the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup on Covid-safe planning for their test events in 2020/21.
Youth Sport Trust
In a year for children and young people like no other, The Youth Sport Trust has worked tirelessly to ensure it is serving the needs of young people and a teaching workforce which needs it most. When schools were forced to close, sports days and clubs cancelled, and teachers became frontline workers, the Youth Sport Trust worked hard to adapt so it could respond to the crisis in a meaningful way.
The charity operates throughout the UK and in the 2019/20 academic year, it supported 20,650 teachers, coaches and practitioners to lead good quality inclusive sport and Physical Education. It helped 309,115 young people to access its programmes and interventions and its sister charity YST international worked in 20 countries.
The Youth Sport Trust wants to ensure that every child — regardless of age, gender, background or ability — has the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of an active lifestyle and has access to high quality PE and school sport for a brighter future.