WELCOME TO THE BALFOUR BEATTY
LONDON YOUTH GAMES
2012 is a very special year for the Balfour Beatty London Youth Games. Hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games in the capital means sport is enjoying a high profile in London than every before, which presents everyone a unique opportunity to inspire young people to get into sport.
Since the day that London won the bid to host the Games in 2005, we have made every effort possible to ensure that the London Youth Games seized this opportunity to build a healthy future for sport and young people in London along with our partners. Participation will have trebled and we have a flourishing volunteer programme with thousands of young people involved.
Now, in Olympic year itself, I believew that the London Youth Games Foundation is now in a stronger position than ever before to build a lasting legacy for young Londoners. Already this year, we have put in place some significant building blocks to ensure we can inspire a generation of young people to compete and volunteer in sport.
In March, we hosted our first-ever London Youth Games schools finals as part of the Government's newly-launched School Games initiative, supported by Sport England through the National Lottery. Around 45,000 young people from nearly 1,500 schools took part in pathway events, leading to 4,000 finalists - leaving us on course to involve enough young people in our competitions to fill the new Olympic Station.
During these competitions, we were delighted to announce our title sponsor Balfour Beatty would extend their sponsorship through to 2015, which means that we have secured over £1 million for grass roots sport post-2012 which will benefit young people in every borough.
With Sport England National Lottery Funding also committing £1 million for the next three years, it means we are in a position to build a significant legacy of London 2012 and inspire a generation of young people to compete and voluntter in sport.
Of course, none of this would be possible without the extended family of the London Youth Games all of who contribute massively to our success.
The backing of every London borough, hundreds of community clubs, over 1500 schools, and all of the volunteers, officials, coaches and parents who commit so much time helps make the London Youth Games such an inspiring event and a catalyst for sporting activity for tens of thousands of young Londoners.
On behalf of every athlete, I would like to thank everyone who has made their contribution to the London Youth Games this year, and in every one of our 35 editions. Just as the young competitors are proud of putting on their borough kit, so should you all be proud of your role in making this Europe's largest annual youth sports event.
Chairman, London Youth Games