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Inclusion of refugees through sport
Start date: Sep 1, 2016, End date: Aug 31, 2019 PROJECT  FINISHED 

CONTEXT/BACKGROUNDThe last year has seen a huge and unprecedented influx of refugees and migrants into Europe. In the face of this crisis, governments have largely not succeeded in finding pan-European solutions, relying instead on national approaches. This project will take a different approach by aiming to strengthen European cooperation in the field of adult learning to enhance inclusion of refugees at the level of civil society organisations. Successful inclusion of the high number of refugees into the European societies is an ongoing agenda that will demand commitment and solutions in the longer term. It is the premise of this project that sport and physical activity organisations in particular, as the biggest civil society sector in the world, can play an important role in providing learning opportunities and taking a holistic approach to successful inclusion of refugees into the European societies. When engaging in sport and physical activities, participants for instance acquire positive life skills, attitudes and values. Moreover, non-formal educational and training activities carried out by sports organisations further enhance leadership and organisational skills and can make important contributions to the learning, self-esteem and, ultimately, employability of the individual participants involved. OBJECTIVES AND OUTPUTSThe Inclusion of Refugees through Sport project has as its overall aim to strengthen the societal inclusion of refugees via the informal and non-formal learning opportunities sport and physical activities provide. The specific objectives areObjective 1: To build the knowledge base for informal and non-formal learning opportunities for societal inclusion of refugees via physical activities and sport Objective 2: To build capacities in participating organisations and develop tools to deliver informal and non-formal learning opportunities for the target groupObjective 3: To establish and run a broad thematic network of organisations working in the fieldObjective 4: To disseminate results and widen the impact of the projectObjective 5 (management objective): To ensure quality in the coordination, monitoring and evaluation of the projectThe proposed project will deliver five specialised Intellectual Outputs: A Good Practices Collection with examples from the field (including key principles that are characteristics of a successful practice); A Grundtvig Video for refugees to learn lifelong principles of active participation in civic society activities; An online learning resource for staff and volunteers in grassroots sport organisations to learn about ways of integrating refugees through their activities; A supporting Toolkit; and A Networking Platform for these organisations to meet and collaborate. After the project has ended, the partner organisations will be able to use the results to train staff and volunteers in their own organisations and thus enhance their own capacities further.PARTICIPANTS AND TARGET GROUPThe International Sport and Culture Association (ISCA) will lead the coordination of the project, and the cross-sector partnership consortium includes the University of Kent and StreetGames (UK), SISU Idrottsutbildarna (Sweden), UISP (Italy), Ollerup Academy of Physical Education (Denmark) and Deutsche Turnerjugend (Germany). The direct target group of the project is the organisations and entities (and the individuals in them) that provide opportunities for engaging in grassroots sport and physical activity. At least 22 organisations will form a network by the end of the project and test the project’s resources before they are disseminated.The ultimate target group of the project is refugees that have arrived in Europe. Since the handling and status of refugees, including their availability to engage in various civic actions differ a lot between the different European member states, the project will from the outset take an inclusive approach to defining the target group. As the project progresses, learnings are expected to emanate as to how various subsets of the ultimate target group can engage in the learning opportunities provided in the grassroots sport setting. It is expected that approximately 4900 refugees will be directly involved in the project’s activities.IMPACTThe project aims to maximise the impact on the target group by increasing the capacity of the grassroots sport organisations that can reach out and provide informal and non-formal learning opportunities, with a starting point in the project consortium. By creating a platform for continued and expanded organisational collaboration on this emerging issue, the project will also impact further organisations and thus potentially impact the systemic level by showcasing and enabling the grassroots sport sector to deliver relevant, informal and non-formal learning opportunities for the inclusion of refugees to achieve wider societal benefits.

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