Chance to Shine

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Chance to Shine is a 10-year programme run by the charitable Cricket Foundation to encourage competitive cricket in state schools in the UK.

Devised and implemented by former cricketer Nick Gandon, it launched with pilot programmes launched in March 2005 - immediately before the 2005 Ashes series - it aims to establish regular coaching and competitive cricket in a third of state schools - 5,200 primary and 1,500 secondary schools - by 2015. Before it was launched, research indicated that cricket was played regularly in less than 10% of state schools, and was only the sixth most popular sport played in schools, with many cricket pitches lost when school playing fields had been sold for development.

The main aim is educational, as a means of developing personal skills and values in the children involved - including leadership, teamwork, respect, individual and collective responsibility, and general standards of conduct - rather than trying to identify cricketing talent. Opportunities are provided to both sexes, from a wide range of cultural backgrounds, including those with special needs. The programme operates in a devolved manner, encouraging small local projects involving around six schools, supported by professional coaches and a local cricket club. The Cricket Foundation can also provide the schools with equipment and facilities.

Chance to Shine is supported, both financially and logistically, but the England and Wales Cricket Board and other cricketing bodies, including the Marylebone Cricket Club, the Lord's Taverners, and the Professional Cricketers' Association. Half of its £50 million programme is funded by private donors, with private fundraising matched by government funding through Sport England. It is estimated that 200,000 children were involved in its first four years of operation.

The President of the programme is Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, with vice presidents including Duncan Fearnley, Lord Ian MacLaurin, Lord Bill Morris, Mark Nicholas, Lord Swraj Paul and Sir Tim Rice. Its chief executive is former first-class cricketer Wasim Khan.