The Caritas Styria is a big social welfare organisation with about 2000 employees in Styria. One of the main focuses is refugee help and integration work with a big variety of projects in this field. The Caritas Academy, which is project partner in ASPIRE, is an institution for adult education. We allow the transfer of knowledge about the working fields of Caritas to the public. Therefore, the expertise of our staff from the daily social work is used and we have the pretension to influence society in a positive way to create a better life for everyone.
Like above-mentioned the Caritas has lots of migration-related projects in integration/inclusion. Some of them have a clear focus on social inclusion in sport: this is mainly the Homeless World Cup Austria (with refugees as one of the main target groups) and SIQ (sports – integration – qualification, target group minors with migration background). But next to this 2 projects sport is also used – even if it´s not the main part - in other projects run by our organisation. We see the positive effects sport can bring to the inclusion of marginalised groups in our daily work. And we also see that the key to success is not only to work with the migrants and refugees. To create a much better output, you have to work with the majority as well. You have to work on the structures of the society, you have to inform and sensitise the local people. And sport clubs and federations are big players in this local society, they are keys to reach a lot of people. So we are sure the approach of ASPIRE is a very good option to create a maximum outcome.
The Caritas Academy as an institution for adult education can use the specific expertise gained in projects like Homeless World Cup and SIQ to support the educational part of ASPIRE. Therefore, we will be part of the group that works on the development and testing of the training modules. Additional we will organise a training sessions to implement the training module in Austria.
On behalf of our organisation Thomas Jaeger will be involved in the project. He was the co-founder of SIQ, where he worked for almost 10 years up to May 2016. Since 2012 he is the Team Manager of the Austrian Homeless World Cup Team. In addition,he started to work for the Caritas Academy in June 2016. In these different roles, he was involved in a few European projects on the topic of social inclusion in sports.
In the field of migration and intercultural communication he works since 7 years in the education of primary school teachers and also gives workshops for intercultural awareness raising in sports (i. e. for the ministry of sports, football federation,etc).