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A new £1.8 million national programme called Breaking Boundaries is set to bring together young people, their families and communities through regular engagement in cricket.

Using the spark of the upcoming 2019 World Cup and the recent success of the Women’s team in 2017, the programme aims to make the most of crickets potential to bring different ethnic and faith communities closer together into one cricket community and foster mutual respect and friendships.

We are delighted to be working with our partners in bringing the Breaking Boundaries project to Birmingham against the backdrop of some exciting cricket matches coming to Edgbaston including the Cricket World Cup.

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In Birmingham the project will be developed and delivered by Sport Birmingham, Warwickshire Cricket Board and Edgbaston Foundation partnering with national charities Youth Sport Trust and Sporting Equals.

Ravinder Masih, Head of Community Engagement at WCCC said “Cricket is so well placed in bringing together diverse communities who are all united in sharing a passion for the sport. We are delighted to be working with our partners in bringing the Breaking Boundaries project to Birmingham against the backdrop of some exciting cricket matches coming to Edgbaston including the Cricket World Cup.

Other areas of the programme include Manchester, Bradford, Slough and London (Barking and Dagenham). It was officially unveiled by Spirit of 2012 Chair Alan Coppin at the 2018 British Ethnic Diversity Awards (BEDSAs) in central London alongside England cricketer Hamidullah Qadri.

Hamidullah, a talented off-spinner became Derbyshire’s youngest first-class player when he made his debut in June 2017, he arrived in Derby at the age of 10 as a refugee from Afghanistan. His love of cricket meant he was playing for his local first team within two years of arriving in the UK.

Ali Oliver, Chief Executive of the Youth Sport Trust said “At a time when it can feel like divisions in society are growing, harnessing the power of sport to heal divisions and bring communities together is increasingly vital.

“This programme has the potential to make a huge, tangible and lasting difference to the lives of people in our five areas. I can’t wait for us to get started.”