Adlington and Agbeze revel in inspiring next generation of burgeoning sporting talent

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Adlington and Agbeze were speaking at an event hosted by the Royal Bank of Canada, who support over 50 of the most talented young British athletes in a partnership with SportsAid
Adlington and Agbeze were speaking at an event hosted by the Royal Bank of Canada, who support over 50 of the most talented young British athletes in a partnership with SportsAid

Sporting icons Rebecca Adlington and Ama Agbeze are helping to nurture the next generation of talent by passing on their wisdom at a special SportsAid event.

The 2008 swimming double gold medallist Adlington was supported by the sports charity when she was a teenager, and has frequently credited their funding for her success.

Speaking at an event hosted by the Royal Bank of Canada, who support over 50 of the most talented young British athletes in a partnership with SportsAid, Adlington said: “SportsAid was massively important for me as a young athlete.

“I think it's one of those as a young athlete, any sort of support for your family is so important, especially as I wasn't paying the bills!

“The support was greatly appreciated as it meant I could go on to the next competition, get a new racing suit, or whatever I needed.

“More so than that, it was the idea that someone believed in you so it added to your confidence as an athlete, and added to your morale. I think that's really priceless for athletes.

“The fundraising from RBC has been fantastic - over £320,000 just to support those athletes which is absolutely incredible and so vital for those athletes as well.

"I think it shows just how important that funding is because nine athletes went out to Tokyo and brought home four medals between them which is fantastic.”

RBC, one of the largest banks in the world and a partner of SportsAid since 2014, provides the next generation of sports stars with financial assistance, recognition and personal development opportunities to help them fulfil their potential.

And since the partnership began, RBC has distributed more than 420 athlete awards with SportsAid.

2018 Commonwealth netball gold medallist Agbeze also attended the event to offer her advice to the young sporting talent.

She said: “I think it is really cool that when you support athletes, and nine of them go to Tokyo, and four of them come back with medals, you almost feel part of their story and part of their journey.

“For me, this is the part of SportsAid that I love – being hands-on, answering questions and getting immersed in it because essentially, I love sport, and sport is the athletes.

“For people at RBC, it is one thing to raise funds and support something but a different thing to see it, it really brings it to life, and that is why RBC has been supporting SportsAid for nine years.”

One athlete supported by SportsAid and RBC is 19-year-old weightlifter Jacob Finnigan, who hopes to claim a Commonwealth and Olympic medal in the future – just as Agbeze and Adlington did.

RBC, one of the largest banks in the world and a partner of SportsAid since 2014, provides the next generation of sports stars with financial assistance, recognition and personal development opportunities to help them fulfil their potential
RBC, one of the largest banks in the world and a partner of SportsAid since 2014, provides the next generation of sports stars with financial assistance, recognition and personal development opportunities to help them fulfil their potential

Finnigan said: “It’s really exciting to be part of this partnership – I’ve been part of it for just over a year now and it’s been really supportive.

“I use the award for petrol, travel, training and to enter competitions, and for supplements like food.

“I always need food for my training to build my strength and it’s good to have a wide variety of food intake.

“I also need to get gear for training and that gear doesn’t last very long because you’re training five or six days a week, so the gear just wears away.

“Being able to be recognised by other athletes also on SportsAid’s funding is great, and seeing how other athletes grow motivates me to push myself to be as good as those other athletes.

“Being able to find out where other athletes train at and what their goals are is really cool to see and seeing others who have similar stories to you makes you feel like there are other people who are going through the same thing so you can talk to them. It’s a really good thing to be part of.”

Royal Bank of Canada is proud to support a broad range of community initiatives through donations, community investments and employee volunteer activities. You can find out more by visiting https://www.rbccm.com/europe/.

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