Laura Cordingley: “I had always really admired the charity’s purpose and that it concentrated on doing a few things well”

I’d worked with Chance to Shine on and off since 2008 before joining as Chief Executive in 2018 and had always really admired the charity’s purpose and that it concentrated on doing a few things well – supporting children in state schools and disadvantaged communities through Street. As I got to know the charity more over the years, I was blown away by its scale and reach. I’ve always had cricket in my life as I grew up with our village club at the end of my street and the noises of a game remind me of playing in my back garden or on the grass opposite our house. Whilst I played a little cricket (I still remember playing in a Kwik cricket festival at Chester-Le-Street – the local, not county ground!) at school I can see how much more I could have benefitted as I would have loved anything that involved playing sport and learning. As I got older and involved in sports development, I also felt there was a huge opportunity there to support children to continue playing locally as the only sports facility was the cricket club in the village. So I love that not only do we help children grow through the game via our programmes but we are also committed to help children to continue playing – all of which could only be achieved by the brilliant partnerships we’ve built over the years. 

In the last two years it has been brilliant to see the great momentum built within our programmes, boosted by the World Cup and our partnerships with ECB, Sport England and the network amongst many others. It’s also been great to see the research and impact around the Secondary Girls’ programme, the development of a strategy for fundraising and an increased focus on the wellbeing of our team and of course our beneficiaries.  

Chance to Shine has impacted upon me in many ways, working with such a passionate team and supporters and partners who are so engaged makes the charity an even more special place to work. Seeing and hearing first-hand from coaches, teachers and participants about how cricket, whether that be in state schools or as part of our Street programme, has helped to change lives is really humbling and never fails to bring a smile to my face or give me continued optimism about the future when I think about such experiences.

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