A scheme which has helped eight local athletes with travel costs will open to applications again in the new year.
The Islands Athlete Travel Award Scheme will support up to eight individuals from Orkney in 2019 with up to £1.5k to help them meet travel costs associated with living in an island community.
A partnership between councils and sportscotland, the scheme first ran in 2018 as a pilot, supporting high-performing athletes from across Orkney, Shetland and Western Isles in 2018 to attend training and competitions.
The aim of this scheme is to improve opportunities for Orkney based athletes to participate, progress and achieve in sport by:
Awards for 2019 will be allocated through an application process, with athletes required to evidence how the grant will improve their performance, provide them access to quality training opportunities and improve their sports or club environment.
Stewart Harris, Chief Executive, sportscotland, said: “At sportscotland we recognise the specific challenges faced by island athletes. That’s why we are delighted to continue support for the Island Athlete Travel Scheme, in partnership with the island councils. Combined with the specialist services provided locally by the sportscotland institute of sport, Orkney’s athletes have the support they need to help them progress in their chosen sport.”
Councillor Rob Crichton is Chair of Orkney Islands Council's Education, Leisure and Housing Committee. He said: "I’m delighted that with continued support from all the Councils and sportscotland that this opportunity will again be available for high performing athletes in Orkney.
"With the Island Games coming to Orkney in 2023 it's fitting we do what we can to support our promising athletes to travel to competitions with their counterparts and develop their experience."
The scheme opens for applications Friday 11 January with a deadline set for Friday 15 February at 17:00. Previous applicants and grant recipients are eligible to apply.
sportscotland has allocated each of the three local authorities £10k, with the Councils then required to top this up with £2k of their own funding plus the equivalent of £3k of management and administrative time. Athletes will be identified for support by each local authority.
To find out more about the scheme contact Education, Leisure and Housing Services by calling 01856873535 or by email.