With Commonwealth Day on Monday (9 March), my thoughts and attention turn to the reach of the fantastic Commonwealth Games and the legacy we will be throwing a spotlight on throughout this national Legacy Week.
This is the third Legacy Week and the first one since the Games last summer, when the host city and Scotland welcomed the world.
With so much going on, a week hardly seems long enough to stop and catch-up with everything but it’s a great chance to be able to highlight the difference so many people are making across the country, in towns, cities and villages, through local projects and national programmes.
This legacy is not owned by a single organisation, it has been built and secured by hundreds and thousands of people taking part, realising opportunities and being inspired by the Games.
Already in my first few months in office I have seen the breadth and depth of how the impact of the Games is being felt. It’s been a real privilege for me. From young people empowered to be leaders, to more people joining sports clubs, from trainees getting jobs, to visitors, competitors, and performers enjoying the use of Games venues. I will champion these continuing opportunities the Games brought to the host city and the country so that as many people as possible can benefit from the investment, facilities and connections made.
Just like the theme for this year’s Commonwealth Day celebrations – Young Commonwealth – young people have very much been at the heart of the legacy of the Games and will continue to be so. The stars of tomorrow not only in the field of sport but in enterprise and leadership too, have been inspired by being involved with and learning through the Games. I have been impressed by their enthusiasm, their enjoyment taking part in sport in and outside school, how they are looking up to role models, taking advantage of training schemes, and volunteering.
So, I’m very much looking forward to this week, and more opportunities to see the legacy in action – from the bricks and mortar of the regeneration in the East End of Glasgow to hearing first-hand how people have been involved. You can join me in celebrating the legacy this week by showing your support to all those making a contribution, and getting involved and benefiting from the legacy too.