GLOBAL INTRODUCTION OF THE GOAL WITH SOME STATISTICS
According to the UN General Assembly, „Sustainable development cannot be realized without peace and security; and peace and security will be at risk without sustainable development”. Transparent official procedures, democratic societies and the rule of law is able to eliminate armed violence and ensure the public welfare. In general, the main aim of SDG 16 is to promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies, strong institutions and reduce/eliminate the violence. At this moment statistics are saddening: by the end of 2017, 68.5 million people became victim of forcible displacements. Criminal acts, such as corruption, bribery or tax evasion cost US$1.26 trillion/year for countries. Homicide of human rights defenders, various forms of violence against children and absence of equal access to justice is a constant problem.
HOW CAN SPORT BE USEFUL TO REACH THE GOAL?
The United Nations have adopted the “Olympic Truce” resolution to build a peaceful world through sport. In addition to the proclamation that Olympic Games can be considered as a “festival of peace”, generally, sport-based educational activities can be used to foster the reduction of violence, support reconciliation and rebuilding states which were “victims” of wars/conflicts and allow the development of good relationships between distinctive groups of people. This statement can be demonstrated not only with the Olympic Games, but also by the sport-based development interventions of international organizations like Peace and Sport, and other stakeholders of the Sport for Development and Peace (SDP) movement. The global NGO, Peace and Sport promotes peace and justice using the power of sport, physical education and physical activity and builds partnerships between international peace organizations, sports organizations and political actors in order to take advantage of sport’s power to foster peace and development mainly in states that are affected by conflict or extreme poverty. Moreover, the UN recognized the diplomatic and peace-building potential of the sports sector and 2015 the UN General Assembly signed a resolution that aims to promote sport as a peace-building tool.
The global Sport for Development and Peace Movement has seen a major development in the last decades, the number of SDP organizations has been multiplied since the beginning of the 90s.
Sport-based educational activities offer learning opportunities to get rid of stereotypes about and they can support the integration of divided cultures. If utilized wisely, sport has the potential and capacity to bring together people and promote peace and mutual understanding amongst them. The founder of the Olympic Movement, Pierre de Coubertin stated that he remained convinced that sport is one of the most forceful elements of peace and he was confident in its future action. If utilized wisely, sports can mitigate sociocultural differences between people and nations and counter aggression. Within the frameworks of sports diplomacy, sport events can become platforms bringing together alienated states. A good example can be a joint North and South Korean delegation to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games or the Rugby World Cup in 1995, which ultimately aimed to fight apartheid and unite the South African people. Moreover, due to their role model status elite athletes, could promote the importance of human rights protection for large publics.
The World Taekwondo Federation established the Taekwondo Humanitarian Foundation in order to promote the taekwondo in refugee camps around the world.
Peace and Sport (Monaco)
Peace and Sport is an international organization, which promotes peace and justice through doing sports. Moreover, the organization has a strong position in the sphere of sports diplomacy, since it develops partnerships between state actors, sports organizations and peace institutions. Website: https://www.peace-sport.org/on-the-field/act-for-what-matters-2/
Football for Hope, Peace and Unity (Rwanda)
Former Rwanda footballer – Eric Murangwa, who survived the Rwandan genocide in 1994 thanks to the sportsman spirit, set up a Football for Hope, Peace and Unity and Dream Team Football Academy, which main aim is to develop champions not only in the football, but also champions in life. The team helps to foster peace and unity regardless of ethnicity or social status of people. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cn5fAHxsY9s
Fight for Peace (Brazil)
Extreme poverty, social exclusion and school bullying is a big problem in Brazil. The Fight for Peace organisation was set up in order to use martial arts combined with education to develop young people affected by violence and crime. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3q7wU-hp0Q
Stop War Start Tennis (Pakistan/India)
Tennis players Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi from Pakistan and Rohan Bopanna from India have understood that not inhabitants, but their countries are at war. They promote peace, fair play, tolerance toward disabled people and sports through the ‘Stop War Start Tennis’ initiative. Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrSm_w0joSI
Skateistan (Afghanistan, Cambodia, South Africa)
Skateistan is an international organization that uses sports (skateboarding) to empower children in Afghanistan, Cambodia and South Africa. They take into account gender equality and for this reason 50% of students are girls. The organization also develops partnerships with child protection agencies in order to connect youth with social services. Through their sporting programmes, Skateistan has an aim to give children the opportunity to become leaders for a better and peaceful world. In the year 2020 the project won the IOC Women and Sport Award. Website: https://www.skateistan.org/
International Day of Sport for Development and Peace
In the year 2013, the UN General Assembly declared 6 April as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. The White Card digital campaign, created by Peace and Sport in 2015, has an aim to celebrate this day. Holding up a White Card symbolises fair play, inclusion, equity and peace. Website: https://www.april6.org/en/white-card/the-origins-of-whitecard.html