Summers almost here and it's time to get out and play some sports. You may not know it but sport and play are human rights which are increasingly recognized and used as a low-cost and high-impact tool in humanitarian, development and peace-building efforts, not only by the UN system but also by non-governmental organizations (NGOs). A great way to share your organization with the public is to sponsor a community sport event such as a soccer or baseball game, perhaps a swimming day at the local public pool or YMCA, a dance class in the park, anything that brings people together to move their bodies.
Sport builds bridges between individuals and across communities, providing a fertile ground for sowing the seeds of development and peace. In fact, Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations Secretary-General has stated: "Sport is increasingly recognized as an important tool in helping the United Nations achieve its objectives, in particular the Millennium Development Goals. By including sport in development and peace programmes in a more systematic way, the United nations can make full use of this cost-efficient tool to help us create a better world.”
The United Nations (UN) has been using sport as a tool in development cooperation and humanitarian aid efforts for decades. In recent years, UN programmes, funds and specialized agencies have increasingly recognized and harnessed the power of sport to achieve their objectives, particularly the eight Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted in 2000.
The UN system draws on the unique convening power of sport as a tool for fundraising, advocacy and raising public awareness about the activities and objectives of the UN. Over 75 famous athletes have been appointed as ‘Ambassadors’ or ‘Spokespersons’ for the UN.
Following is the 1-hour special on sports and peace development, enjoy.