Global sports stars back the ‘Lloyd Cowan Bursary’ to support the next generation of UK athletes
Sprint legend Usain Bolt, London 2012 Olympic heptathlon champion, Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill and Britain's fastest woman, Dina Asher-Smith, are amongst the track and field superstars supporting the launch of the 'Lloyd Cowan Bursary'.
Lloyd Cowan was an international hurdler who became one of Great Britain's most successful coaches. He guided Christine Ohuruogu to World, Olympic and Commonwealth titles over 400m, and Andy Turner to European and Commonwealth 110 metres hurdles victories.
A hugely popular and much respected coach, Cowan’s death in January 2021 from COVID-19 led to an outpouring of grief from the international athletics community. The 'Lloyd Cowan Bursary' will award grants of up to £500 twice a year (in March and September). They will be available to coaches, and to unfunded athletes, aged 16-23, for whom cost is a barrier to accessing developmental opportunities in athletics.
Ohuruogu is part of the team behind the bursary. She said: "Lloyd once told me that 'everyone has a dream,' and he aimed to support athletes and coaches to achieve their goals, however, big or small. He was always helping build the future of athletics. The lockdown has negatively impacted so many young people's lives and their sporting opportunities. This bursary will recognise, encourage and support athletes and coaches who dream of being better versions of themselves through athletics. I am so proud. This is a fitting legacy for Lloyd, a phenomenal man and coach who lived his life, inspiring young people to thrive. However, we need the sports community to help us. Our initial goal is to raise £100,000. We want this bursary to be a lasting legacy in Lloyd’s name."
The international charity and United Nations NGO, the Youth Charter, is delighted to be supporting the bursary. Its Founder and Chairman is Professor Geoff Thompson. He said: "One of the essential elements of the Youth Charter's renewed 2019 Action Plan is to see 10,000 Social Coaches reengage and build trust, confidence and respect with young people and communities. Thus, we are thrilled to support the 'Lloyd Cowan Bursary' and honour the memory of a coaching great who depicted everything that a Social coach is in his ability to inspire people not only on the track, but in life."