Awards & Grants

JRF awarded grant by The National Lottery Heritage Fund

Connie Henry MBE, Lorna Falconer, Jawahir 'JJ' Roble MBE

The Jason Roberts Foundation has received a National Lottery Heritage Fund grant of £144,370.00 for an exciting heritage project ‘Empower to Achieve’ in Brent. Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the project will trace the Ancestry of Women in Sport of Caribbean, Indian, and Somali Heritage.

Supported through The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the project will enable local young people discover the origins and explore the history of women including, amongst others, Celeste Stevens, Lorna Falconer, Jawahir ‘JJ’ Roble, MBE, and Connie Henry, MBE. all working in different areas of the sports industry, including Football Clubs, competition, officiating, broadcasting, media, and charity.

JRF is an organisation that works with young people and creates opportunities for them to flourish and grow and through this project young people from across Brent will gain a deeper insight into the history of Women in Sport, as well as teaching them valuable new skills in Media, Presenting, Broadcasting, Photography and Videography, Film Making, curating, and archiving to use as they develop their careers.

Commenting on the award, Otis Roberts, CEO of JRF said: “We are thrilled to have received this support thanks to National Lottery players and are grateful for the commitment by our women of heritage, relatable role models to be an integral part of the two-year programme. We are confident the ‘Empower to Achieve’ project will inspire girls and young women to fulfil their potential in life and realise there are no barriers to them pursuing a career in any field of work.”

Notes to editors

About the Jason Roberts Foundation (JRF)

JRF is a sport for development charity delivering a programme of wrap-around support – mentoring, life skills, education, and training, within our multi-sports activities providing opportunities and promoting exercise and team games to young people, including those at risk, and those with physical and learning disabilities. There is also a focus on health and wellbeing family interventions, and intergenerational community projects and events. We collaborate with local voluntary, public, and private sector organisations, and funding bodies to achieve our objective of ‘community first’.

About The National Lottery Heritage Fund

As the largest dedicated funder of the UK’s heritage, The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s vision is for heritage to be valued, cared for and sustained for everyone, now and in the future as set out in our strategic plan, Heritage 2033. 

Over the next ten years, the Heritage Fund aims to invest £3.6billion raised for good causes by National Lottery players to bring about benefits for people, places, and the natural environment.  

The Heritage Fund helps protect, transform, and share the things from the past that people care about, from popular museums and historic places, our natural environment, and fragile species, to the languages and cultural traditions that celebrate who we are. 

The Heritage Fund is passionate about heritage and committed to driving innovation and collaboration to make a positive difference to people’s lives today, while leaving a lasting legacy for future generations to enjoy.  

Follow @HeritageFundUK on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #NationalLotteryHeritageFund

Further information

For more information contact JRF at

Photo credit @ amanda rose

JRF to deliver London EmpowerHER Girls’ Rugby Project

The Jason Roberts Foundation (JRF) are delighted to have been selected by England Rugby and the Mayor of London to deliver London EmpowerHER, a new project that aims to create a healthier, safer, and more inclusive future for young women and girls.

The project will launch in April and will be delivered to local schools and from JRF’s community hub on the Stonebridge Estate, Bridgestone Arena (formerly The Pavilion), London NW10 8LW.

Offering weekly Rugby coaching sessions alongside monthly ‘club’ sessions which will informally explore issues such as mental well-being, leadership and relationships, nutrition, self-care, and personal support.

Media activities will involve each participant creating a podcast to talk about their rugby experiences, focusing on activities to raise the profile of women’s rugby in preparation for the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2025,

There will also be the opportunity for participants to attend an England Women’s game at Twickenham for the 6 Nations or a Saracens Women’s game at StoneX Stadium.

JRF will host two Rugby celebration community events with demonstration rugby skills and opportunities for everyone to have a go.

Martene Carroll, Business Development Manager for JRF said; “We are especially pleased to have been chosen to deliver this exciting initiative that is targeted to young women and girls. Despite our broad offer, we continue to experience lower participation rates amongst girls, especially as they reach adolescence. We know the myriad reasons teenage girls disengage from sport and physical activity, for example, feeling judged and lack of self-belief. We hope that through the London EmpowerHER project young women and girls will be inspired in sport and in life and we will see female participation rates grow.”


If you aged 11 – 18-years-old and are interested in taking part in this project, please contact

About London EmpowerHER:

England Rugby and the Mayor of London have joined forces to deliver London EmpowerHER, a new project aiming to create a healthier, safer, and more inclusive future for young women and girls in Redbridge and Brent communities.

As part of the project, non-contact rugby activities will be delivered to girls in the region that are designed to foster physical fitness, leadership skills, and a pathway to better employability. Beyond that, the project is also committed to supporting London’s anti-violence against women campaign, by spreading awareness and education.

The project will commence from April 2024 with young women and girls (11-18yrs), in two London boroughs – Brent & Redbridge – being the primary focus.

With England hosting Rugby World Cup 2025, and with Twickenham being a host venue for the tournament, England Rugby is seeking to grow the women and girls’ game throughout the capital and showcase the many benefits the sport can have on both mental and physical health.

Bolstered by hosting next year’s Rugby World Cup, England Rugby has set a target of reaching 100k registered female players by 2027. The London EmpowerHER initiative is designed to help achieve that growth, while also allowing young girls to develop skills that will be important in later life.

For more information visit

WNST Funding for JRF

Wembley National Stadium Trust logo

Thanks to funding from the Wembley National Stadium Trust (WNST) the JRF Team are delighted by the ongoing work they have been able to deliver for the benefit of the Brent community.

JRF was one of several local groups that was invited by WNST to apply for funding as part of the Trust’s new ‘Anchor Organisations’ programme’.

The two-year funding from WNST has enabled JRF to deliver a wide range of activities, events, and health initiatives for the local community. As well as regular multi-sports and fitness activities that cater for all ages and abilities, the over 50’s have set up a Walking Football Team ‘Bridgestone Steppers’ and a group of young people have created a Basketball Team the ‘Bridgestone Bulls’.

Community outreach is enabling the team to engage with neighbouring residents to ensure that everyone in the community can get involved in sports, regardless of any barriers they face.

Through funding, facilities at JRF’s community hub, Bridgestone Arena, have been upgraded including additional items of gym equipment and Basketball stands and hoops, enabling the team to provide safe and accessible sports facilities for all members of the community.

JRF is reliant on the dedication and expertise of their coaches and volunteers, and part of the funding is being used to provide ongoing training and professional development opportunities to help them stay current and effective in their roles.

Regular intergenerational Community events allow people to come together through sport alleviating isolation and loneliness, helping people to feel more connected. The funding has allowed JRF to offer the Brent public a host of events including a celebration day for the Brazilian community, Health & Wellbeing initiatives, Sports tournaments, and social action enterprises including community clean-up days.

Otis Roberts, CEO of the Foundation said; “We are thrilled to have been awarded this funding by the Wembley National Stadium Trust. By focusing on the plans we proposed as part of our application, we believe we can make a lasting impact on the health and well-being of our local community and leave a positive legacy for future generations.”

To hear more from Otis about the impact of the funding watch this video

WNST is a charitable grant-making trust, distributing funding received from Wembley National Stadium Ltd to support community sports activities.

For more information visit

Edward Harvist Trust Fund Grant for JRF

Green screen in the cultural media centre

Following their successful ‘Thrive in Brent’ application to the Edward Harvist Trust Fund the JRF Team are delighted by the positive impact the project is having on the local community.

The awarded grant has enabled JRF to purchase equipment for the Community Hub to aid Fitness Activities, Events, and Training programmes for Brent residents.

Regular community events hosted by the JRF team celebrate the rich diversity of Brent and support residents to come together socially, share experiences, and build strong relationships. From cultural festivals, sports tournaments, and family fun days, these gatherings help to foster a sense of belonging and unity, enhancing community spirit.

A key aspect of JRF’s offer is to empower young people with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life, through education, training, and career pathways. The funding has enabled the team to offer access to mentoring and career workshops to guide young adults towards fulfilling and sustainable careers.

Sport, exercise, and fitness activities are central to JRF’s offer and Health and Wellbeing are at the core of the ‘Thrive in Brent’ project, as it seeks to improve the overall physical and mental wellbeing of Brent residents. Offering a diverse rage of fitness classes, from yoga and dance to outdoor workouts and sports activities, with the aim of making exercise enjoyable and accessible to all age groups and fitness levels. Nutritional workshops and health screenings are also on offer to underpin healthy lifestyle choices.

Martene Carroll, Business Development Manager for JRF said of the award; “We are delighted to again receive funding from the Edward Harvist Trust Fund to support our work in the community. In 2021 during the Covid-19 pandemic, we were awarded funding to equip and open our onsite Cultural Media Centre, and with the additional funding provided at the time by Wembley National Stadium Trust (WNST), this allowed us to deliver online talks, forums, and fitness sessions during National lockdowns, which was a vital lifeline for the Brent community. We are very grateful to the Trust for their ongoing support.”

Young People have their say

A small group of young people receiving mentoring

The JRF Team are pleased to announce a new programme for young people in Brent; ‘Your Say’ to give them a platform to discuss issues that affect them, and to help tackle violence affecting youth and the community.

Working in partnership with Young Brent Foundation, the programme is funded by One Flow One Brent in their bid to provide opportunities and services that not just engage young people, but also educate them on how to live safely in their environments.

The programme will run through to the end of March and will encompass a Youth Steering Group, alongside positive activities including Sports coaching, mentoring to improve wellbeing as well as for professional development, workshops through the Met Police and the Safer Neighbourhood Team, and ‘Have your Say’ Media sessions.

Young Brent Foundation identified a need for services that focus on improving the mental health of the young people in three specific estates; Chalkhill, Church End, and Stonebridge, and through this grant funding they have formed partnerships with several local organisations who work with young people.

Otis Roberts, CEO of JRF said; “The objectives of this programme are clear, and strongly resonate with us. Our aim is for young people to have a platform for open discussion on a range of issues including drugs, violence, and gangs. We want to support them and help educate them, so they are more confident to resist being drawn into dangerous pathways and empower them to make positive decisions and friendship choices.”

JRF support people living with Dementia

The FA Logo

Thanks to funding through the FA Just Play Grants programme, the Jason Roberts Foundation are pleased to announce a new initiative for people in Brent living with Dementia.

‘Forget-me-Not’ is a weekly programme for men and women offering a range of activities including sport, exercise, and music to encourage everyone in the community to stay fit, active, and connected.

The sessions are delivered each Wednesday from 11:30am – 1:00pm at Bridgestone Arena (formerly the Pavilion) at Stonebridge Recreation Ground, NW10 8LW and are led by qualified coaches who offer activities including football, dance, and walking.

The activities have been designed to be light-hearted, stimulating, and fun with the aim of ensuring everyone feels able to join in. There is also a relaxed space for people to chat over light refreshments before and after the sessions.

Participants can turn up and play, or they can register to attend sessions via the FA Events Platform here Events – Booking Landing Page (  or by contacting

JRF Awarded Grant from the Hyde Charitable Trust

Boy in JRF Kit next to JRF Logo

The JRF team are excited to announce they have been awarded a 3-year Grant from the Hyde Charitable Trust to deliver the ‘JRF in the Community’ Project.

The Sport for development project aims to build community engagement and increase sports participation by delivering a range of fun, accessible, and exciting activities including multi-sports, team games, and fitness sessions.

There will be Personal and social development training incorporating careers workshops, life-skills, and financial literacy sessions, as well as volunteering and training opportunities to enhance skills, qualifications, and career prospects.

Mentoring and progression pathways will engage the most marginalised and isolated in the local community, to develop confidence and enhance self-esteem through creative endeavours and, ‘Find your Voice’ media sessions.

The ‘JRF in the Community’ project caters for the entire Brent community to encourage everyone to participate in and enjoy community sports activities, as well as the wraparound services offered through the programme.

Julie Costley, Hyde’s Successful Places, Projects and Partnership Manager said:

“We’re delighted to be supporting the ‘JRF in the Community’ project. At Hyde we can see first-hand the vital role that organisations such as JRF play – both to young people and adults.

“The pandemic caused a lot of disruption to communities, impacting on everything from activity levels to people’s self-confidence. This funding is going to help develop more opportunities for people across Brent to engage with sport, training and physical activity.

“We’re looking forward to engaging even more with communities in Brent and helping inspire people to achieve their goals.”

To ensure there are no barriers to participation, there will be a range of open mixed sessions, girls, and women only sessions, and inclusive sports, games, and activity sessions including trips and excursions for children and young people with physical and learning disabilities.

Otis Roberts, CEO of the Foundation said; “We are thrilled to have been chosen to receive this grant from the Hyde Charitable Trust. For several years Hyde have supported us to deliver sports and recreational activities for the children and young people of Brent. This 3-year grant will help us to engage all Brent residents to create a positive and inclusive community where everyone can enjoy the benefits of sport and lead healthier and happier lives.”

JRF Receive Back to Movement Funding

Young People being taught Golf

JRF are delighted to announce a second year of funding from Back to Movement by Track Academy, to deliver the ‘Golf in the Community’ and ‘Youth Zone’ projects for the benefit of children and young people in Brent.

Due to the success and popularity of both projects that were launched in early 2022, JRF have been awarded the grant funding to continue the initiatives.

Back to Movement continues in 2023, with an extended programme designed for the local Brent community and surrounding boroughs to contribute to, not only recover from Covid-19, but to also help bring back the bond in communities across London.

Track Academy in collaboration with Sport England (Together Fund) and National Lottery (Community Fund) continues to go back to basics by, getting people and communities back into movement. The aim with this programme is to continue encouraging the community to come together and work together, to get active again by rebuilding hope, reconnect and looking forward to the future.

JRF’s ‘Golf in the Community’ project will provide urban golf for local children and young people – helping them to keep active and healthy, and offering a new sport for them to try. Sessions will be delivered twice weekly – one from Bridgestone Arena, NW10, the other through community outreach in local schools, parks and green spaces.

Young participants will also have the opportunity to take part in trips to a professional Golf Club, with the support of JRF’s Golf Partners.

The ‘Youth Zone’ is an inclusive and accessible club held each week on a Friday evening for young people to connect socially. In addition to multi-sports, games, and exercise, the club provides creative activities including music and media, as well as mentoring and careers workshops for older participants considering progression pathways.

Martene Carroll, Business Development Manager for JRF said; “We are so grateful to Track Academy, Sport England, and the National Lottery Community Fund for their continued support through these grants. Enabling us to deliver a second year of ‘Golf in the Community’ and the ‘Youth Zone’ will not only help us to engage more young people, but it will allow us to have a deeper and more sustainable impact on those who have previously taken part in the activities.”

Back to Movement project coordinator Grace Veys says: “The programme has helped many organisations expand their services and reach more people over the course of 2022. We are glad that we are able to continue the project for another year. The project motivates thousands of Brent residents and other boroughs to leave the house again after Covid-19, meet new people, learn new skills and have a brighter look at the future. We are glad to be stripping away financial and accessibility barriers, creating safe spaces for participants, improving quality of life, increasing self-esteem and confidence, and most importantly healing after grief.”

If you would like more information regarding these projects please contact with the subject header either ‘Golf in the Community’ or ‘Youth Zone’.

Easter EGG-travaganza at JRF 

Easter Flyer Cropped

April 2023 

On Monday 3rd April JRF opened its doors at Bridgestone Arena, NW10 8LW, the ‘home’ of the Foundation since its launch in 2007, for an Easter Half Term Holiday programme for children and young people of Brent. 

Thanks to funding from Young Brent Foundation’s One Flow One Brent (OFOB) and Hyde Housing partnership, the Easter holiday programme will help to keep young people safe, connected, occupied, and active during the two week break from school. 

With a broad range of sports and activities on offer including Tennis, Football, Boxing, Dance, Golf, Basketball, and Teqball to name a few, as well as creative and personal development workshops, and opportunities for children to try out new sports, there is bound to be something for everyone.  

JRF offer an open access programme of activities to ensure everyone can take part and no-one is excluded.  

Thanks to funding through Brent Council You Decide Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure Levy (NCIL), activities for children and young people with physical and learning disabilities are being integrated alongside mainstream delivery through JRF’s ‘Inclusive Communities’ project, and incorporate a Buddy System, creating an ethos where everyone can take part equally, helping to break down barriers to participation so the children feel less marginalised and excluded. 

The half term programmes help to ensure children and young people have a safe place to go during the long summer holidays, where they can take part in sports and fun, affordable activities. JRF strive to give children opportunities to keep fit, active, and healthy whilst having the opportunity to socialise with their friends and make new ones, and enjoy new experiences through trips and excursions. 

Otis Roberts CEO at the Foundation said: ‘We are delighted to be able to offer Brent youth a space to be active and healthy during the school holidays. Sport is a great tool for engagement giving children a variety of activities to try out, whilst interacting and making friends. We are thankful to Young Brent Foundation, OFOB, and Hyde Housing for their continued support, and we look forward to our ongoing partnership.” 

With the spring sun shining brightly this is sure to be a fun and exciting Easter EGGtravanganza! 

For enquiries regarding the half term programme contact with the subject ‘Easter 2023’. 

For enquiries regarding the Inclusive Communities project contact with the subject ‘Inclusive Communities’. 

Follow the Jason Roberts Foundation social media channels @JasonRobertsFdn to keep up to date with all the news, ongoing activities, and new initiatives being delivered. 

This Girl Can: New Sports Programme for Girls

This Girl Can Flyer

March 2023

JRF are pleased to announce a new Sports Programme specifically for girls – ‘This Girl Can’ an outreach programme to reframe sport and physical activity for girls, to tackle adolescent and teenage disengagement.

The project funded by Hyde Housing Association Ltd. Will involve relatable role models to expand the image of what ‘sporty’ looks like, and aims to offer activities that are exciting and appealing, to encourage more girls to take part.

The 6-month ‘This Girl Can’ project has been informed by the findings and recommendations from the Women in Sport’s 2022 Report, funded by Sport England “Reframing Sport for Teenage Girls: Tackling Teenage Disengagement” Published in March 2022.

JRF has consulted with their existing female participants, Youth Volunteers, and Coaches to understand their motivation for playing sport and participating in activities that are on offer, and conversely, what barriers thet face that stops them from playing sport.

Using the information learnt, and a better understanding of teenage girls’ lives and their relationship with sport and physical activity, as well as the wider issues they face, JRF will offer targeted sports and physical activity sessions for girls that pose no judgement, give girls a voice and a choice, and encourage girls to build sport and exercise into their existing habits.

If you are interested in joining the programme please email with the subject header: This Girl Can.