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Sport Unlimited

The Tottenham Hotspur Foundation helped mark a significant milestone in the run up to the 2012 Paralympic Games opening in London.

The Tottenham Hotspur Foundation helped mark a significant milestone in the run up to the 2012 Paralympic Games opening in London.

With just 1,000 days to go until Britain's best Paralympians take to the field on home soil, youngsters from Haringey were taking part in a sports session aimed at helping them make sport a regular part of their lives.

The session at the Vale School, Tottenham, was part of Sport England's national Sport Unlimited programme, which is offering young people who are not yet playing regular sport in the community the freedom to choose the sports on offer to them.

The session, delivered by coaches from the Foundation, saw the participants being taught a range of skills to give them the confidence to play sport, including throwing, catching, co-ordination and team work. The coaches use the sessions to spot talented youngsters who could go on to represent their borough in the London Youth Games and other disability sports events.

Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe MP and Sport England's Chief Executive Jennie Price joined the young people for their session.

Gerry Sutcliffe said:

"Sport for all has to be much more than just a slogan. Projects like this one from Sport England and the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation are helping to make it a reality, encouraging young people with special needs to see how sport can be fun, healthy and rewarding - all in all, a valuable part of their lives."

Jennie Price said:

"What I found so powerful today was seeing sports coaches from outside the school coming in and working closely with the children. You could tell by the buzz in the room that the youngsters were really enjoying themselves. The key to delivering high-quality sessions like this is finding the right coaches with the skills and understanding to inspire the next generation of budding participants."

Sport Unlimited is making a major contribution to the Government's pledge to give every young person the opportunity to take part in five hours of quality sport each week.

Over 250,000 five to 19-year-olds have completed 10-week sports courses since Sport Unlimited started. Thousands of high-quality activities have already been delivered across a wide range of sports including football, climbing, skiing, kayaking and parkour.

During the three-year programme, 900,000 young people are set to benefit from Sport Unlimited - helping to deliver a lasting participation legacy from London 2012.

Sport England launched the programme nationally last autumn after a successful trial in 12 areas. Early indications suggest that a third of the young people who have taken part in Sport Unlimited have gone on to join local sports clubs or continue their participation.