Migrant and refugee crisis
More than a million migrants and refugees have crossed into Europe in recent years, sparking migrant and refugee crises. Some of the challenges of the current situation in Europe are well known; other issues will only become clear over time. Workable solutions will probably only emerge by taking a long-term perspective, one that offers a practical solution to the many problems of inclusion, both during and after the settlement of migrants and refugees.
Sport, physical activity and play: a possible response to refugee crisis?
Sport is often claimed to help address social problems, such as the effects of social exclusion. Participation in sport, physical activity and play can be a means of promoting intercultural dialogue and mutual understanding. It can also ease the transition process, alleviate trauma and support the psychological and social wellbeing of individuals in marginalised, traumatised, or other at-risk groups. There is evidence that sport and physical activity contributes to positive relationships, trust, community cohesion, and enhanced social status (Human Capital Model, Bailey, et al., 2012, 2013). This way, sport can help Europe to address some of the challenges related to the recent migrant and refugee crises and the social inclusion of refugees.
ASPIRE in a nutshell
ASPIRE – Activity, Sport, Play for the Inclusion of Refugees in Europe is an international project that focuses on social inclusion in relation to people who are at risk of exclusion, especially refugees.
ASPIRE seeks to establish how sports clubs can best support the inclusion of migrants and refugees building on the wide popularity of sport and other forms of physical activity.
ASPIRE could serve as a pioneer in the long-term perspective, offering a positive, evidence-based response to the many problems of inclusion, during and after the settlement of migrants and refugees by using sport to facilitate the access of refugees to social services.
The ASPIRE project has the main aim of offering migrants and refugees opportunities for participation in sport and in community life through sport.
Development of a training module
The specialised training module guides sports organisations on how to become more accessible and refugee-friendly. It also supports individuals with a sporting background on how to adapt existing coaching activities to the specific context of migrants and refugees.
Organisation of training sessions
The implementation occurs through the organisation of training sessions for facilitators from national or regional sport umbrella organisations in 9 European countries, with a wide geographical coverage.
Communication and Dissemination
Continuous awareness-raising and dissemination activities are an integral part of the project. We work with a variety of organisations to create a strong link with the grassroots level and raise awareness of the potential role of sport in promoting the social inclusion of migrants and refugees.