SPORTING CHANCE is proud to announce that double Olympic gold medallist Colonel Dame Kelly Holmes is to become a patron of the charity.
Col. Dame Kelly, who won gold at 800 metres and 1,500 metres in Athens in 2004 and who was voted BBC Sports Personality that same year, will join Sir Elton John, Sir AP McCoy, Kate Hoey MP, Lee Dixon and Tony Smith on our list of patrons.
After retiring as an athlete, Col. Dame Kelly established her own Trust, which trains and develops world class athletes to deliver personal, social and emotional development programmes for young people who might be facing disadvantage, thus empowering them to realise the attitudes and behaviours needed to lead a positive life.
During the last 10 years, the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust has provided over 27,500 hours of mentoring from Olympic, Paralympic and world class athletes, who are themselves helped through finding a new role after retirement. More than 4,700 young people have completed the organisation's transformational programmes and more than 240,000 have been impacted through the inspirational programmes.
"We are delighted that Kelly has agreed to join us," said Tony Adams, Sporting Chance founder. "She had a stellar career as an athlete and has been using her retirement to benefit others, and so she brings a broad skill-set to the charity, given her experiences both professionally as an athlete and personally.
"The work Kelly has been doing over the past decade will dovetail well with what we do at the charity. Our work has expanded more and more from being initially about treating addictive illnesses into working with sports men and women on mental health issues and we are also more involved in other sports beyond football so this is a good fit for both Kelly and ourselves."
Added Col. Dame Kelly: "After being approached by Sporting Chance to join them as a Patron, I spent time finding out about them and visiting their centre to see what they do and I am very happy to be adding my support to them.
"Thankfully there is more focus on the issues of addiction and mental health in sport but there is still a lot of work to be done. I will do what I can to bring my experience and expertise in helping to promote the Sporting Chance cause and to help athletes in the best way I can."
We welcome Col. Dame Kelly aboard and look forward to a long and fruitful relationship.