Social Cohesion and Community Cohesion

Cohesion is vitally important in every aspect of life, without cohesion different groups are working against one another which causes tension, violence and discrimination (Cantle, 2007). Sports clubs are used to increase communities’ social cohesion, this is an important concept due to society becoming more diverse. It allows the bringing together of people who share the same interests, values and understandings. Taylor et al (2003) states that community sport ‘can make increasingly vital contributions to the health of the nation, community regeneration and cohesion’. To achieve togetherness between diverse groups of people they need to have face to face contact in social contexts, this allows the group of people to cooperate with one another and this would increase cohesion (Burggraeve, 2008). Sporting equals brought together young people from different backgrounds that never had to communicate with one another, they wanted to show that sport was a way to overcome the low levels of cohesion between the two different groups of young people. The reason for this was to overall increase the community cohesion which is defined as ‘working towards a society in which there is a common vision and sense of belonging’ (DCSF/CLG, 2007). The main sports included were wheelchair basketball, dodgeball, table-tennis and football. They wanted to create the right environment to bring the young people into a safe environment to bring the community together and talk about what they believe is wrong in society. The overall aim was to leave a legacy of increased community cohesion and a wider sporting profile with the younger people engaged from Asian and White communities, this allowed them to get a greater understanding of different cultures (Sporting Equals, 2015).



Burggraeve, R. (2008). The awakening to the other: A provocative dialogue with Emmanuel Levinas. Leuven: Peeters.

Cantle, T. (2007). ‘Race and Community Cohesion’. Sociology Review. 3(16), 1-4.

DCSF/CLG (2007) Guidance on the Duty to Promote Community Cohesion.  London: Department for Children, Schools and Families.

Sporting Equals. (2015). Increasing Participation. Retrieved from on 24th February.

Taylor, P., Nichols, G., Holmes, K., James, M., Gratton, C., Garrett, R., Kokolakakis, T., Mulder, C., & King, L. (2003). Sports volunteering in England. London: Sport England.