This Girl Can gets Sheffield youngsters moving

17th January 2017

Girls and young women in the Page Hall area of Sheffield have been given access to free exercise classes, thanks to an initiative to get the nation moving.

This Girl Can Sheffield, which is being led by SIV, provided Zumba sessions for youngsters in the community aged between 11 and 25 to encourage sport and physical activity. The sessions, held at Page Hall Community Centre, saw 19 girls attend the eight-week block designed to show how exercise can be fun as well as improve general health and wellbeing. Volunteers from the Pakistan and Community Association's (PACA) Roma Network helped to encourage the youngsters, many of whom are from the Roma community, to take part in the classes. Rhona Sanders, health coordinator at PACA, said: -We're really pleased that the Zumba sessions were so well attended and it was fantastic to see youngsters from the community getting involved. -Within an age range in this community where there is little or no emphasis on physical activity, the Zumba classes allowed the youngsters to discover their abilities, which can help them to aspire to a better future, as well as improving self-esteem and confidence. -I also believe this has a positive knock-on effect in school, where this same confidence can be applied within a learning environment, which can hugely influence their attitude at school. Rachel Sanderson, funding assistant at SIV, said: -It's fantastic to see that the Zumba classes have been such a huge success and that the young people who attended them gained such a lot from taking part. -At SIV we are committed to ensuring everyone in the region has access to regular sport and physical activity and initiatives like This Girl Can Sheffield help us to achieve this. Part of the national campaign developed by Sport England, This Girl Can Sheffield is being supported locally by nine other local partners - Move More, Stocksbridge Community Leisure Centre, Pakistan Advice & Community Association, School Sports Partnerships, Places for People, Foxhill Forum, Abbeydale Tennis Club, Sheffield United Community Foundation and Football Unites Racism Divides (FURD). With two million fewer women than men and boys aged 14 to 40 regularly doing sport, research shows that women are more likely to only become active because of body image and competency fears. For more information and a full schedule of free activity sessions visit or follow This Girl Can Sheffield on Facebook.

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