Our members have continued activities in collaboration with local sports clubs whose purpose is to raise the awareness of children and youth about violence and discrimination. This time we visited “Women football club SFK 2000 Sarajevo”; “Volleyball Club Ilijaš”, and “Women football club Vogosca”. Our members had an opportunity to represent the project SONKEI, its aim, and its activities.
The main topic of the project SONKEI is »Combat violence and tackle racism, discrimination, and intolerance in sport«. We are aware that the problem of violence and intolerance in sports is not properly addressed in our communities, so we want to make a difference. In our local environments, violence in sports is practically a taboo subject.
We have only a very limited number of reports and research about these problems in our country, but according to the reports from other EU countries and other countries around the world, violence in sports must be also present in our countries.
We aim to prevent violence and intolerance in sports through education and the promotion of values of respect, courage, gender equality, inclusion, and non-violence. By doing this we intend to change the mindsets of people and initiate social change that will provide a safer environment for everyone.
During these visits, we continued testing the PRACTICAL EDUCATIONAL TOOLS for raising the awareness of children and youth about violence and discrimination. Our members explained the purpose of the practical educational tool and implemented games such as “Finding similarities”, “Violence, Discrimination, and Intolerance”, “Guess Who?”, “The Snake” and so on. This helped to develop awareness about the topic of violence in sports. Through expanding our experience and knowledge we got a wider picture of the situation regarding the topic from those who are part of the sport. Also, this was the turning point to start creating a new environment for those who enjoy sports.
According to European Parliament’s Resolution on Women in Sport (2020/2280(INI)) The European Parliament urges Member States and sport federations to adopt measures for the prevention and elimination of sexual harassment and abuse in sport by enforcing the legislation on sexual harassment at work, informing athletes and their parents of the risk of abuse and the means of legal action available to them, providing sports organizations’ staff with specific training, and ensuring that criminal and disciplinary provisions are applied. To be able to do this, it is important to interlink all the relevant agencies and assure that they cooperate in a manner that will provide the best possible results. If the policies and procedures do not get implemented into grassroots sports organizations, individuals cannot benefit from them. This is entirely in line with the objectives of the SONKEI – Respect in sport, Respect in Life project.
We can conclude that we must make more effort to educate people about the problem of violence and intolerance in sports and to implement practical strategies in grassroots sport organizations. With our project we will educate and inform sport professionals how to tackle the problem of violence and intolerance in sport in grassroots sport organizations and raise the awareness of violence in sport and violence in general in our societies.