Sport and citizenship commits to the inclusion of sport and physical activity in the european commission’s recovery plan
Sport and Citizenship, as a member of SHARE initiative, is taking a stand with several European organizations. The aim: adopt sport-related amendments in the Recovery Plan.
Since its first appearance in 2019, the Covid-19 has continued to disrupt our everyday life. This pandemic has not only generated a health crisis, but also important social and economic damages that the European Union (EU) must face. The European Commission has adopted several emergency measures included in the NextGenerationEU program. Amongst this recovery instruments, the SHARE initiative has identified four funding mechanisms of importance to the sport sector: The Recovery and Resilience Facility (RRF), the REACT-EU and EU4HEALTH programmes, and the Cohesion Policy 2021-2027.
The “Position paper on the mainstreaming of sport in the recovery mechanisms and cohesions policy funds”, initiated by SHARE, demonstrates the important role that sport and physical activity can play in building a more resilient, sustainable society. As such, SHARE advocates for the inclusion of sport in recovery support mechanisms, not only as a hard-hit sector in need of reconstruction, but also as a strategic sector in the wider economic and social recovery process. The paper also provides justifications for these amendments to be adopted, based on previous research and results of sport-led initiatives.
The SHARE initiative, launched in 2018 by the Commission, also advocates for the contribution of sport to broader regional development objectives. Its main objective is to raise awareness on the role of sport and physical activity in the context of regional and local development.
SHARE members want this role to be adequately taken into account as part of policy and investment decision-making at European, national and regional levels. As such, local sport-related initiatives would promote healthy lifestyles, improve employability, bring communities together and strengthen social inclusion. In other words, sport would help achieve the objectives of cohesion policy.
Sport and Citizenship signed this Position paper to ensure that the sport and physical activity sector will be clearly mentioned in the recovery support mechanisms. This direct mention would allow to channel investments towards this sector, and support both its recovery and its well-known influence on health and well-being, cohesion and social inclusion or territorial regeneration.
As the Commission calls for a more resilient, sustainable, and healthy society that is better able to address future global health and economic threats, Sport and Citizenship supports sport and physical activity as a tool to achieve these goals. Therefore, policy makers are called upon to advocate the amendments proposed by the paper.