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Crawley’s rising sports stars encouraged to apply for sponsorship through scheme

The scheme helps local athletes by offering them access to high-quality training facilities, financial support and expert advice.

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Up-and-coming athletes in Crawley are being given the opportunity to receive funding from a local sports provider as part of its talent development programme.

Everyone Active, who will be taking over management of the leisure provision in Crawley in partnership with Crawley Borough Council, is calling for aspiring sports stars to apply for funding and support as part of its Sporting Champions scheme.

More news: ‘Sell the United States Declaration of Independence’, says Crawley Councillor

The scheme helps local athletes to achieve their sporting potential by offering them access to high-quality training facilities, financial support and expert advice. From grass roots athletes through to Olympic medallists, it has already aided more than 800 people on their sporting journeys.

Successful candidates will be awarded with bronze, silver or gold sponsorship packages. All athletes are provided with free access to Everyone Active’s centres across the country, and those on the higher tiers can also receive a sponsorship grant of up to £5,000 to help towards their training and competition costs.

Athletes on the scheme are also given exclusive opportunities to join mentoring sessions led by some of Britain’s most influential sports stars. Over the last year, scheme ambassador and Olympic medallist, Colin Jackson CBE, has hosted a number of mentoring days offering advice on topics including nutrition, money management and mental wellbeing. Alongside some of the country’s best athletes, Colin plays an integral part in providing both one-to-one and group mentoring opportunities to the athletes.

Stuart Mills, contract manager at Everyone Active, said:

“Since we launched the scheme in 2016, we have invested over £500,000 in helping the next generation of sports stars to achieve both national and international success.

“We are committed to offering support and funding for athletes from across Crawley and I would urge local athletes to apply for Everyone Active’s Sporting Champions scheme so that we can help them on their journey.”

Applications are now open and will close on 31 October 2018, and aspiring athletes are advised to email: sportingchampions@everyoneactive.com for an application form.

For more information about Everyone Active’s Sporting Champions scheme please visit www.easportingchampions.com

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Health & Wellbeing

‘I’m not ok and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that’ says Crawley Councillor as he opens up about mental health

As part of Mental Health day a Crawley councillor has opened up about his own mental health issues to show local people that it is ok to open up and talk about the issue.

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Liam Ascough is a councillor for Gossops Green in Crawley

Gossops Green Councillor Liam Ascough has written an open letter to his colleagues at the council to raise awareness of mental health issues.

Addressing directly the Council Leader and the Chief Executive, Liam writes:

“Dear Peter and Natalie,

After watching the ‘Every mind Matters’ TV advert, supported by the Duke and Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex, I felt that I had write this open letter of apology but also to help continue the conversation on mental health issues. 

I want to apologise to the both of you, members of staff, fellow members of the council but most importantly to the residents of Gossops Green and North East Broadfield because it’s ok not to be ok and I should have said something a long time ago. 

I have suffered bouts of depression since 2015 but I put that all on hold when my mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in October 2017. This happened in the same week I was unceremoniously let go as a Conservative Parliamentary candidate, finished with the partner I thought I’d married and buried a great friend of mine who had died of cancer. October 2017 wasn’t my best month!! 

When I stood as a Parliamentary candidate in 2015, I was on top of the world. I was doing what I’d wanted to do since I was 14 (yes I know, I’m a geek). It was such a full on campaign and I felt I was at the centre of it. After that though, it felt like I’d been dropped like a hot potato. Like I’d been on X Factor one minute and then you were nobody. The Party wasn’t interested in you anymore and suddenly you go from being a somebody to be a nobody again. 

I carried on as if nothing was wrong, although inside I felt deeply depressed and used. Then October 2017 happened and it all got a lot worse. 

Sadly I lost my best friend in my mother on January 4th this year after a monumental battle with cancer. She put up such a great fight but not a day will go by that I don’t miss my mother. Watching her in so much pain, was beyond heartbreaking. 

I put a brave face on, as I always do and tried to get on with things. Sometimes not so well though, as I remember a very kind family in Gossops Green took me into their house whilst canvassing, after I started to cry. I should have known at that point that I wasn’t really coping. 

It wasn’t until my birthday in July that it finally all hit me. Again, I tried to put a brave face on and project the image that everything was ok. The thing is, I’M NOT OK!

There is absolutely nothing wrong with that either. I should have said it a long time ago! 

I am sorry for the meetings that I’ve missed and the emails that I haven’t replied to!! I should have said something before. I just couldn’t admit it to myself let alone anyone else! 

The thing is, now that I’ve admitted that I’m not ok, I can finally start to get help and to get back on track.

That’s why I wanted to write this open letter. To say sorry for letting people down. To explain what’s been going on and to be honest about it. Probably most importantly, to let others know that’s it’s ok, to not be ok. I needed to be honest with myself.

The help I received from St Catherine’s Hospice has been invaluable! I am also incredibly blessed to have an amazing network or friends who are my family. 

I am getting through this and I will recover.

Some will think I’m just feeling sorry for myself and that I should ‘man up’. To be fair that’s something I would have said before. Regardless I still think it is ok to say that I’m not ok. I encourage anyone who isn’t feeling ok, to talk about it.

You are not alone and don’t have to ‘man up’ so to speak.”

If you would like more information and help on any issues to do with mental health you can find out more at:

https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/

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