Sport For Confidence is delighted to announce that our Founder, Lyndsey Barrett, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the 2021 Queen’s Birthday Honours. This recommendation has been made by the Prime Minister on the advice of the independent Main Honours Committee following an independent assessment process
Recognised for her work supporting disabled people to be more active, Lyndsey will receive her British Empire Medal from the Lord-Lieutenant at a Royal Garden Party. This event will be arranged once social distancing restrictions allow.
“To receive this recognition and to be able to celebrate with my family, the team and all our participants is truly amazing .” Says Lyndsey. “When I left my role as Senior Occupational Therapist at the NHS back in 2015 and began to deliver occupational therapy services to one person at Basildon Sporting Village, I had no idea that Sport For Confidence would grow into an established brand, creating opportunities for more than 2,500 individuals who face barriers to participation to enjoy the many benefits of sport on a monthly basis. Sport for Confidence now operates at multiple leisure centres across Essex and London, bringing occupational therapists together with sports coaches to deliver goal oriented, person-centred sporting experiences that delivers positive outcomes that extend way beyond the field of play.
“Today, I am incredibly proud to receive this award. I never set out to gain personal accolades but I have to admit this one is very special. I get my motivation and drive from the positive impact Sport For Confidence delivers on a daily basis and I intend to continue to work hard to stamp out inequalities that exist in sport and to strengthen collaboration between physical activity and health professionals.
“Sport delivers so many health and social benefits, it should be the undisputed right of everybody to be able to access opportunities and get involved. I will continue to push for this through the work of Sport For Confidence and our partner network.”
Speaking of Lyndsey’s achievement, Stephen Mitchell, Co Founder and Director, Sport For Confidence, says: “I couldn’t be prouder of Lyndsey and on behalf of the Sport for Confidence family would like to congratulate her on this incredible recognition. She is an extremely humble individual and shies away from celebrating her own personal success, but now she has received this British Empire Medal, this is the public recognition she deserves for her achievements to date. For an individual who consistently puts other people’s needs above hers, particularly clients and participants of our programmes, this goes some way to acknowledge her incredible journey through sport, occupational therapy and building a social enterprise.
“Whilst there is still a great deal of work to be done tackling inequalities in sport, the work of Lyndsey and the broader team is shining a light on the issues and evidencing the success of Allied Health Professionals and physical activity professionals working together to deliver life changing health and social outcomes on a community wide scale. Lyndsey is absolutely relentless in her ambition to see an occupational therapist located at every leisure centre in the country, moving the profession from a purely clinical environment out into the community. What Lyndsey has achieved to date is amazing. Imagine what she can achieve moving forwards, using this as a springboard for delivering more impact!”