SportCares, has a simple mission: To use sport as a force for social good by empowering people in need. They were set up by the Singapore Sports Council in late 2012 as a foundation and a movement to help people live better through sports. They deliver sports programming interwoven with values and character development, educational support and life-skills training. By offering a safe environment with role-model coaches and volunteers, they help bridge communities by linking underprivileged beneficiaries with passionate volunteers and community-spirited donors. As a Movement, they support and encourage the development of independent initiatives to empower people, enhance social inclusion and bring communities and individuals closer together.
SportCares Foundation exists as a fund under The Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS), a charitable philanthropic organisation bridging donors to community needs. It is a registered charity with Institutions of a Public Character status. All donations to SportCares Foundation will be channelled to CFS.
Akin to WOHS14’s overall theme, “Inspiring Lives as One”, SportCares, launched in 2012 under the Singapore Sports Council, is a charity foundation which helps to link needy beneficiaries, passionate volunteers and donors through sports programming.
They believe in improving lives of the underprivileged children, youth-at-risk, needy seniors, people with physical and/or intellectual disabilities through the activation of sports.
As the first recommendation to be rolled out by Vision 2030: Live Better Through Sports, SportCares have since raised some $300,000 for sports-related social causes. Some of their programmes include the Saturday Night Lights, CareRunners and many other workshops.
Saturday Night Lights (SNL) is SportCares’ flagship football programme that weaves in values and character development, educational support and life-skills training. SportCares provide training to low income and at-risk youths aged 12 – 21 every Saturday from 7pm – 9pm. Piloting this programme with groups from Taman Jurong and Henderson grassroots communities in May 2013 at Jurong Stadium, this programme has now expanded to ITE College Central and St. Wilfred Stadium, with youths from Northlight School and Kembangan-Chai Chee constituency on board the programme. Currently, SportCares have about 200 boys in SNL.
CareRunners is a running programme modelled after SNL and SportCares is currently at the infancy stage for this programme with a small group of about 10 runners from Taman Jurong and Henderson. The youths train at CCAB Stadium every Thursday evening. As running has a lower barrier of entry compared to other sports, SportCares is planning to expand the programme to 9 other locations next year. Some potential partners in the pipeline are Thong Kheng Student Care Centre, Boon Lay Gardens Primary School and Singapore Sports School. This programme will serve low income / at-risk children and youths from 8 -22 years old.
On a separate note, SportCares also organises workshops with Singapore Prison Services. Partnering the Singapore Slingers to run basketball workshops with inmates from Tanah Merah Prison last year, SportCares followed up in May this year with a seven- week training workshops for selected released prisoners, which culminate in a half-time match during the final home game of the Singapore Slingers. Called the Community Hoops, the team was an integrated unit of ex-offenders, their family members and their friends, demonstrating how sport could help them integrate back into the community.