Svenska Spel has announced that it will sponsor “50 Swedish athletes from 40 different sports” continuing its ‘Elite Sports Scholarship’ programme in partnership with Riksidrottsförbundets, Sweden’s Sports Confederation.
The flagship sports directive of Sweden’s state-owned gambling and lotteries monopoly received applications of 353 athletes from 36 different Swedish sports federations to join its 2023/2024 programme.
Scholarship recipients will receive SEK 50,000 (€4,500) in financial support from Svenska Spel, alongside access to athlete resources such as sports psychology, medicine and mentoring offered by Riksidrottsförbundets.
Nicklas Biverståhl, who oversees the Scholarship programme for Svenska Spel, commented: “Svenska Spel is Swedish sports’ biggest sponsor, and talent development is very close to our hearts.
“Combining an elite investment with studies requires a lot of will and we are happy to help the scholarship holders realize their dreams. It’s especially fun to see the breadth of sports and education among the active people who today receive the Elite Sports Scholarship.”
Of significance, Svenska Spel underlined that 2023/2024 sports scholars represented the most diverse recipients of the programme since its founding.
The 2023/2024 scholarship programme has targeted funding athletes from poor backgrounds with limited access to sports and para-sports resources.
Liselotte Ohlson, head of elite sports at Riksidrottsförbundets, explained: “The research study ‘Ways to the top of the world’ shows that many elite athletes are in need of a family or relatives who can provide both financial and social support, because that support is lacking in parts of elite sports such as low-resource sports and para sports.
Svenska Spel revealed that of recipients, 56% were women, and 44% were men. Whilst all the awardees were university/college students, with seven studying outside of Sweden, to support their sports development.