In Jordan, a key focus of International Inspiration has been building leadership skills among young people – particularly girls – who have not traditionally been encouraged to take part in physical exercise and sport. Other projects aim to to challenge stereotypes and increase children's awareness and understanding of disability sport.
Liz Nicholl, CEO of UK Sport, one of International Inspiration's key delivery partners, has just returned from a visit to Jordan to see first hand the impact the programme is having on the country, and how they are working to ensure lasting change to the way that sport is delivered.
She told us her thoughts:
'Jordan, where I have spent the past four days, is at the start of its third year of involvement with International Inspiration but the legacy of the programme will last for years to come. What makes this programme so special is its unique approach. Not only is it providing opportunities for young people to take part in sport, sometimes for the first time, crucially it is also creating partnerships with teachers, coaches, communities and the government to ensure that programmes that are implemented are supported locally and are sustainable.
'One of the stand-out examples of this has been the implementation of 15 'sports hubs' which open up their doors to provide regular sports and play activities for children from 4-18 years after school. A focus of these sports hubs is to increase opportunities for children who have sometimes been marginalised from their communities, including children with disabilities, girls and refugees.
'These hubs have created safe spaces for children to gather, feel included and take part in sport, whatever their ability. Their aim is to make sport part of a daily routine. The one I visited in Meleh, Madaba is providing a safe indoor space, away from the streets, for children to take part in sport and learn about health issues and working as a team.
'I had numerous positive experiences during my time in Jordan, none of which was more uplifting than meeting the young people involved in the projects themselves. A couple of them in particular, stand out. One girl called Hana has been trained as a young leader, planning and running festivals of activity in her school for other pupils, including those with a disability. Hana is also one of 20 young girls in her school who have gone on to train another 60 young leaders in their community.
'Their teacher, Imam, told me that all these girls have grown in confidence, are active and are contributing to their school, community and are working with other schools, all thanks to International Inspiration.
'It was clear to me that International Inspiration is making a difference and creating long lasting systematic change. It is truly delivering on the pledge made by Seb Coe back in 2005 to inspire the youth of the world to choose sport. Together, with the support of the numerous organisations involved in each country it will continue to create a positive impact on the lives of youngsters for years to come. It is something for us all involved to be proud of and I am confident it is leaving a lasting legacy for London 2012.'
International Inspiration is London 2012's international legacy programme, delivered by UK Sport, the British Council and UNICEF. It aims to provide sporting opportunities for 12 million children in 20 countries across the world. To date, it has reached almost seven million children in 15 countries, from Azerbaijan to Zambia.