Harper Performance CIC is an SEUK certified non-profit social enterprise that exists to tackle inequality and democratise the scientification of sport. Over the past 50 years or so, the impact of cutting edge sports science, nutrition, athletic development and sports medicine has created a huge gap between the "have's" and the "have not's" in global sport. This means that athletes in places like the UK, the USA and Australia have an enormous advantage over their counterparts from less economically developed countries. We think this runs contrary to the values and ideals of sport. We are wholeheartedly committed to the idea of the 'Corinthian Spirit', that whoever you are, wherever you come from and whatever your background, you deserve the opportunity to compete on a level playing field and exist to see sport live up to its lofty ideals around equality of opportunity.
We don't think the scientification of sport is inherently bad, and we don't believe that sport should arrest its evolution to find just how fast, high and strong the human body can go and be, and we don't think athletes, clubs or national teams should stop looking for cutting edge solutions to developing high performance in sport, it's what makes sport so enthralling.
However, we do believe that access to these developments in science and performance-support should be available to the global masses and not just a privileged few and that's where we focus our efforts. We're a group of world-leading sports scientists, nutritionists, athletic development coaches and sports medicine clinicians who boast a collective experience of over 100 years at the very top of elite sport, supporting Olympians and World Champions to the highest echelons of sporting achievement. We're using all that experience and expertise to target disadvantaged communities in the developing world, where the sporting talent is not receiving the support it needs to realise its full potential.
We find local partners, and together we blend the best global practice in developing sporting performance with local know-how to co-develop accessible, sustainable, relevant and most importantly, locally driven performance-support programmes to develop the next generation of athletes and sportspeople to compete with the best in the world.
Our vision is that one day, whether you're born into wealth or poverty or whether you're born in London or Kampala, that you are given opportunities in sport worthy of your promise. You can find out what all that looks like in practice by clicking on the Project Uganda tab at the top of this page.
what is a social enterprise and whAT IS THE CIC BIT ABOUT?
Social enterprises address the most pressing problems societies face through employing scalable, self-sustainable and innovative business models. They must balance financial responsibilities and social impact and must coordinate among multiple stakeholders, including employees, regulators, clients and beneficiaries. As a result, social enterprise leaders manage complex trade-offs.
Social enterprises take on various legal structures, the most common being as a Community Interest Company (CIC). Harper Performance is a registered Community Interest Company limited by guarantee. A CIC is, put simply, a normal limited company with extra features to mark it out as a non-profit social enterprise. The key added feature is that CIC’s come under the regulation of the office of the CIC Regulator. The Regulator’s job is to make sure that the CIC is genuinely a social enterprise and is not abusing the trust that the public expects to put in a community interest company. By putting the company under the Regulator’s scrutiny, the directors of a CIC can clearly demonstrate that the company is genuinely a social enterprise venture and not for private profit.
why aren't you a charity?
We understand that non-profit social enterprise is a relatively new concept, and one that isn't widely understood yet, however, we believe that the non-profit social enterprise model is the most appropriate for our work and mission - our goal over the next 3 years is to become fully self-sustaining, i.e. that we no longer rely on donations or grants and generate all of our funding through our own revenue streams.
The CIC non-profit social enterprise structure allows us the agility and financial resilience of a regular business, all the while maintaining trust with our donors, supporters and beneficiaries by being under the jurisdiction of the CIC regulator as an entirely non-profit operation. Many other charities in the UK are already operating as CIC's and over the coming years, we believe we'll see more and more third sector organisations switching to the more modern CIC legal structure rather than a traditional charity.
Moving forward, we are developing and diversifying our revenue streams to maintain financial resilience in an ever-changing and unpredictable global economy. We support a number of fee-paying athletes, teams and sports institutions in the UK, whereby 100% of the proceeds from these clients is reinvested in our project work in the developing world. In addition, we hold events for both the performance-science community through CPD-style events, but also more generally, like music gigs and fundraising galas. Finally, we're currently in the latter stages of starting our very own coffee brand; Equaliser Coffee, where again, 100% of the proceeds will be invested in our project work in the developing world and other equality causes in global sport.
Self-sustainability is a challenging goal as a small, growing and ambitious third sector organisation and takes a great deal of work but we thrive off setting our sights high and striving towards them. In the meantime, we remain incredibly grateful for the support of our donors, supporters, partners and sponsors in making our mission a reality here and now!
how is hp funded?
Right now, the majority of our funding is through grants, sponsorships and donations from foundations, grant-giving institutions and individual donors. That funding is topped up through HP Professional, whereby our expert team work with UK-based athletes, teams and sports clubs with 100% of the proceeds being reinvested in our project work in the developing world.
As a social enterprise, over the next 3 years, we aim to become fully self-sustaining, i.e. that we no longer rely on donations or grants and generate all our funding through our own revenue streams, with small top ups from donors and grants.
HOW CAN I SUPPORT HP CIC?
There are numerous ways individuals and organisations alike can support Harper Performance CIC and our project work tackling inequality in sport. The easiest way to support our work is to make a one-time donation or join our official supporters club; The Mkimu Club for as little as £1 per month. Click on the 'Support Us' tab at the top of the page to find out more or get in touch with our Founding Director; Tim directly via firstname.lastname@example.org.
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