GB Boxing’s Lewis Richardson has been selected to take part in UK Sport’s “Powered by Purpose” programme to help funded athletes use their platform to inspire, facilitate and enable positive social change.
Colchester-born, Richardson, is one of 21 athletes from 16 sports that will take part in the programme, which is being delivered in partnership with the True Athlete Project and will run until March 2024.
The middleweight, who won European Championship silver and Commonwealth Games bronze in 2022 while studying for a Masters Degree at Sheffield Hallam University, will take part in a series of tailored, personalised workshops and receive individual support designed to help participants explore the power of sport and how their role as elite athletes can enable them to become agents for social change.
Richardson is the second member of the GB Boxing squad to take in ‘Powered by Purpose’ and follows Academy boxer, Ellis Trowbridge, who took part in last year’s pilot scheme.
Richardson said: “I have always been keen to play a role within the community and be a positive role model – for young people especially – but I have never really had a structure to help me understand the best way to do this, so I hope that Powered by Purpose will provide me with this and give me guidance and advice on ways that I can make a real change in the communities that matter to me.
“I think it will give me an educational understanding of how you can present yourself and tell your story to inspire both the current and future generation, whether that’s people locally or nationally.
“I think this programme overall will support and push me on to becoming a better version of myself and with that, a better role model for others, particularly those people from a similar background to me.”
Richardson’s application for the Powered by Purpose programme was supported by GB Boxing’s Performance Lifestyle Advisor, James Hooper, who provides assistance and support to all of the boxers in GB Boxing’s Podium and Academy squads.
GB Boxing’s Performance Director, Rob McCracken added: “Helping our boxers to grow and develop as people is a key part of our work with World Class Programme (WCP) which provides wrap-around support to all the athletes and encourages them to pursue interests outside of the gym and find ways to make a positive impact away from sport.
“It is great for athletes in all sports that UK Sport is able to offer opportunities like ‘Powered by Purpose’ and I have do no doubt that will Lewis, who is a great example of an athlete that upholds the values of GB Boxing on a daily basis, will be an asset to the programme.”
Dame Katherine Grainger, chair of UK Sport, said: “I’m delighted to welcome the second cohort of athletes to the Powered by Purpose programme. The success of the pilot programme, and those who took part in it, was a source of enormous pride to me and to everyone at UK Sport. It is brilliant to be partnering with fantastic team at The True Athlete Project to deliver this programme once again.
“It’s so encouraging to see that many athletes genuinely want to use their platform and influence to make a difference to social causes that matter to them.
“I wish the new group of athletes every success in their work on the programme, and look forward to watching them explore the positive social impact that is so important to us all.”