The funding enabled Brixton Wings to offer on-water rowing sessions at London Regatta Centre (The Docklands) during the school holidays.
All participants have experience of indoor rowing, having attended weekly indoor rowing sessions at the Brixton Recreation Centre The opportunity to row on water, learn a new aspect of the sport, and to gain water confidence has had a very powerful and lasting impact on every young person. Access to the water is a challenge, even in London where distances may seem short. The funding support covered transportation costs for all participants.
This grassroots, parent-led organisation is driven by Medg Sullivan. Brixton wings as an emphasis on providing After-School and Early Intervention programmes for children and young adults from disadvantaged backgrounds. Brixton Wings is now in its 10th year delivering indoor and on water rowing sessions for young people. IN the aftermath of Covid-19, when offering the on-water experience seemed too challenging, support from The Boat Race made the sessions possible. Thirty novices took to the water and received expert coaching to develop theri rowing skills over a full week of activity.
Over the years Brixton Wings have introduced over 500 young people from South London to the sport of rowing and our mission is to continue in that vein. As new learn to row (L2R) participants are welcomed onto our programmes, our advanced rowers gain experience through volunteering and through accreditation pathways within the sport. A particular case study tracks the journey of a young carer, fearful of new challenges and rowing, became an accomplished L2R novice and is now rowing while at Oxford Brooks University, having gained a distinction as a Level 2 rowing coach through a Coach Core apprenticeship programmes, delivered and presented in collaboration with LYR.
At Brixton Wings they recognise the value of opportunities and resources available to us, directed toward genuine social mobility opportunities for participants coming from disadvantaged and underrepresented backgrounds. Through their music, rowing and Saturday School provisions, we help participants realise essential life skills. Whether participants are improving coordination and concentration whilst playing a music instrument or gaining confidence in communicating during a rowing class, we strive to support positive behaviours and wider life outcomes.