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Changing the Game - Can A Sport-Based Youth Development Programme Generate a Positive Social Return on Investment?

Ben Sanders, Emanuel Raptis


This study examines a sport for development and peace intervention initiated by Grassroot Soccer South Africa that promotes youth employability and leadership. A results-based management approach and a social return on investment methodology were used to track the young people during and after the intervention. Preliminary results offer encouraging evidence of progress into employment, education and training with positive social returns for the youth and external stakeholders, suggesting that this investment is cost-effective and impactful. The results indicate that structured sport-based programmes can put young people to work and study in a constructive manner, thereby stimulating economic growth and development. It is concluded that initiatives using sport to promote youth work merit greater investment, recognition and research.


return on investment; sport for development; youth work

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