Commonwealth Connections


Commonwealth Connections was a joint project from the British Council and the Birmingham Organising Committee for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, which twinned 60 schools in the West Midlands with 60 overseas schools across 10 Commonwealth countries, to design and deliver activities based on Commonwealth sports.

What we did

Delivered in partnership with Birmingham Education Partnership (BEP) and Youth Sport Trust (YST), the Commonwealth Connections project formed part of the Birmingham 2022 Organising Committee’s Youth and Education programme, which aimed to use sport and art to create connections between young people on shared Commonwealth values.

Participating schools from the West Midlands were represented across the following seven local authorities: Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Sandwell, Solihull, Walsall, Wolverhampton. And they were partnered with schools in ten Commonwealth countries: Ghana, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Trinidad and Tobago, Uganda, and Zambia.

Schools in the programme were supported and mentored by five YST Athletes who competed in previous Commonwealth Games: Tom Davis (Judo), Steve Frew (Gymnastics), Liz Johnson (Swimming), Lesley Owusu (Athletics), Jenny Wallwork (Badminton).

Our athlete mentors used their experiences to help young people develop leadership skills as ‘Changemakers’. They were asked to design and deliver sports clubs and festivals that linked to the country they were twinned with and explore Commonwealth Games sports.  

You can still access the Commonwealth Games 2022 Schools Resource, designed by the Youth Sport Trust in collaboration with The British Council. The activities are designed for schools, with or without a partner, to celebrate the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and the Commonwealth’s ongoing work to improve the lives of its citizens.