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Athlete Support Programme, including Athlete Medical Scheme  



“A programme to assist Northern Ireland’s most talented sportspeople to perform successfully in competition”


What are the objectives of the Athlete Support Programme?


The Athlete Support Programme provides financial support for two levels of the development continuum – Elite and Performance.


The Elite level of the programme is designed to support those sportspeople of whom international sporting success is a realistic short-term objective.


The objectives of the elite programme are to assist identified sportspeople to achieve greater success in targeted international competition, to improve international rankings and to win medals at:

  •  the Olympic Games

  •  the Commonwealth Games

  •  the World Championships; or

  •  the European Championships

within the period of their performance plan.


The Performance level of the programme provides support for those sportspeople for whom international success is a realistic long-term objective.  In some circumstances this may include support for teams or squads in preparation for interprovincial competition.


The objective of the performance programme is to assist identified sportspeople to achieve levels of performance that will enable them to progress towards international success, improve rankings and/or success in interprovincial competition.


Who can apply?


Applications can normally only be submitted on behalf of an athlete, team or squad by the recognised Governing Body of Sport.  Further details of recognised Governing Bodies of Sport are available upon request.


How much funding is available?


This will depend on which level of the programme you are eligible to make an application for.


In the case of Elite level the maximum funding available is £12,000 per annum; for the Performance level the maximum will be £6,000 per annum.


In both cases funding is only available for a maximum of 12 months.  Towards the end of the funding period, should the athlete require further funding a second shorter application form must be completed.


What will the programme fund?


Funding will be available for:

  •     training camps

  •     additional competitive opportunities

  •     coaching

  •     personal competition and training equipment

  •     personal training costs

  •     targeted competition costs

  •     athlete support services, e.g. sports science, sports medicine.

What is not eligible for funding?

  •     any costs associated with preparing the application

  •     domestic training

  •     some of the final event costs

How do I make an application?


Firstly, contact the Sports Council Lottery Fund (SCLF) to request a copy of the Information & Guidance notes.  The Information & Guidance notes will contain further information about the programme.  If you wish to make an application, you must complete the enquiry form and return it (with the Governing Body’s endorsement) to the SCLF. 


If the SCLF deem your project to be eligible for consideration for funding an application form will be issued. 


The application form and performance plan must be completed and returned to SCLF before the published closing date.


What are the closing dates?


There are 3 closing dates each year.  Dates agreed for 2004 are:

  •     Friday 25 June 2020

  •     Friday 29 October 2020

Recent Successes of Lottery funded Athletes


Jenna McCorkell

Paul Brizzell


The following Lottery funded athletes were recent medal winners at international competition:

  •    Andrew Bree (Swimming), European Short Course Swimming Championships

  •    Jenna McCorkell (Ice-Skating), British Ice Skating Championships

  •    Mark Allen (Snooker), World U21 Snooker Championships and

  •    Paul Brizzell and Anna Boyle (Athletics), Irish Indoor Athletics Championships.

Andrew Bree


For further information on the Athlete Support Programme or the application procedure please contact the Sports Council’s Lottery Fund on 028 9038 2222.






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Last modified: Thursday March 04, 2020.