Award-winning leisure operator Everyone Active generated £342m in social value at its sites across the country in 2019/20.
The figure represents the non-market economic, social and environmental value of the organisation – and is equivalent to £367 per customer.
Using Everyone Active member data, the Social Value Calculator (SVC), developed by 4global in partnership with Sheffield Hallam University and Experian, determined the social value created by investment in sport and physical activity.
Data generated from 206 Everyone Active sites and more than 930,000 users hitting the SV threshold*, revealed the savings generated across four key areas – improved health, improved subjective wellbeing, increased educational attainment and reduced crime.
Given the impact of the pandemic in 2020 and 2021, the reopening of leisure centres provides an opportunity for leisure operators to regenerate savings through their services and to support the health, wellbeing and educational attainment of the nation.
Discussing the importance of the months ahead, Everyone Active business development director, Pete Williams, said: 'In a period where we’re pleased to have reopened our centres to members and customers, we’re also aware of the impact the past 13 months had on the physical and mental wellbeing of people across the country.
'Therefore, over the coming months, it’s crucial we continue to rebuild customer confidence and reconnect with the communities in which we operate.
'As we work closely in line with Sport England’s ‘Uniting The Movement’ strategy, it’s a phase in which we need to recover and reinvent, and this will be essential to ensure we can support our customers and deliver against the four key components of social value.'
Dr Steve Mann, director at 4global, said: 'At 4global, we believe in the life-changing powers of physical activity, in terms of the benefit to physical and mental health.
'As one of the leading operators in this area, we are proud to support Everyone Active in the measurement and analysis of social value across the country, evidencing the huge societal benefit generated in leisure facilities and through ongoing programmes.'
In Ashfield, between March 2019 and March 2020, Everyone Active’s regional programme revealed a £3.04m social return at an increase of 17.5% on the previous year and a year-on-year increase in value of £396,501.
Having begun a new 10-year contract in partnership with Ashfield District Council from April 1, 2021, Everyone Active has pledged to increase social value return by 50% and set out to achieve the target by delivering on the authority’s strategic outcomes.
The Active Communities, Health and Happiness Plan set out by Everyone Active, details the key objectives and outcomes for specific community groups. The action plan aims to provide increased participation across all ages, development of existing colleagues and the provision of new jobs in the community, all contributing towards social value in Ashfield.
Lorenzo Clark, Everyone Active’s contract manager, said: 'We share Ashfield District Council’s commitment to delivering sustainable solutions, resulting in local economic benefits, social value, regeneration and carbon reduction. Leisure centres place high demands on utilities, so energy conservation is one of the most important aspect of our environmental management services.
'Our solutions will increase participation, reduce inactivity, reduce barriers and increase the health and wellbeing of Ashfield’s communities.'
Andrea Stone, health and wellbeing team leader at Ashfield District Council, said: 'Everyone Active has a strong focus on developing social value return to Ashfield communities through strong partnership working, a focused active communities plan linked closely to the Ashfield Be Healthy, Be Happy wellbeing strategy, and commitment to reducing the health inequalities that exist across the district.
'Alongside plans to significantly increase participation within the leisure centres, through investment in new, larger gyms and group exercise studios, the contract will deliver an enhanced range of interventions to support our currently less active residents, with a focus on low-income families and those with long-term disabilities or health conditions. The centres will each have purpose-built health hubs, with social connectivity, physical and mental wellbeing at their heart.'
* Based on research by Sheffield Hallam University, for a participant to generate social value they must participate a minimum of 4 visits over the course of a given month
This article was sponsored by Everyone Active