Speaking after a meeting with the interim head of the civil service and others this week, Sinn Féin MLA, Karen Mullan has called for the reinstatement of the Sports Development Programme.
Ms Mullan said:
“Following a number of meetings this week with the interim head of the civil service and others Sinn Féin once again pressed concerns regarding the cut to the Sports Development Programme.
“This programme must be protected and we have raised the issue of the reinstatement of the funding for these projects again.
“Closing the Sports Development Programme will have a hugely detrimental impact on GAA and IFA coaching schemes and could affect up to 50 jobs, 400 schools and approximately 40,000 children.
“This programme teaches children the importance of living a healthy and active lifestyle and also helps to increase their confidence and social interaction skills.
“Physical education is an essential part of the curriculum in today’s setting where we also have higher levels of obesity and mental health issues amongst our young people.
“It is proven that physical activity can help address both while also giving a worthwhile focus for our young people.
“Sinn Féin’s position is clear, the cut to this frontline service must be reversed.”