Jamaica Gleaner / Sports minister Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange has said that the Sports Development Foundation (SDF) is now open to what she describes as “considerable requests” from sporting organisations that might be over the allocation they are normally granted.
However, she said that these requests must be accompanied by what she terms “solid justification” by the organisations applying.
“We are making no specific promises about what might be given, but we are saying that the SDF is willing to give consideration to such requests. I feel that I am justified in putting that on the table,” she said.
But SDF general manager Denzil Wilks said that this announcement made by Grange did not mean that the body has actually made more revenue.
The SDF gets its revenue from what is known as the CHASE (Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education) Fund. CHASE gives the SDF 40 per cent of what it is given from what the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission makes for the financial year.
“In 2016, the Lotto sales were a little bit better and it went a shade over the $600 million,” Wilks told The Gleaner . “Even now we’re still projecting for 2017, because December is not yet complete, but we’re looking more in the vicinity of about $580 million, so it’s not a lot of difference.
“Nothing has changed. We know of no change in terms of our source of funding or the amount that is expected. The only thing that has changed is that in the past, there have been times when we actually allocate to each association a sum of money over and above their monthly stipend. In this case, what’s happening is that when there is no allocation made, a sum of money is set aside and each association puts in their application based on what they are doing, and a committee makes an assessment and determines what can be funded from that little amount, as against what cannot. Outside of that, no fundamental change.”
Grange explained what she meant by solid justification, noting that it requires sporting bodies providing audited reports showing that they have been properly managing funds already given to them, based on international guidelines; and also providing a reasonable explanation for how the money would be used if given.
“Even to get the regular subvention, that is necessary,” she said. “They have to show they have a work programme, how they spend the money; they have to reach out to all age groups who can participate in that particular discipline; and they have to show that their governance structure is in place. We are prepared to work with each association to ensure that they have the capacity and that they are able to involve all age groups from the basic-school level, where that particular sporting discipline can be practised through to the professional level in adulthood. Also, to encourage them to have programmes that can involve communities and individuals at a recreational level.”