New European project on preventing discrimination through sport kicks off

May 2021 – SENTRY-SPORT, a new European project on the prevention of discrimination through sport led by the Italian Association for Sport for All (Unione Italiana Sport per Tutti, UISP) and in which Efus is a partner, was launched on 4 March with an online kick-off meeting. 

Co-funded by the European Union through the Erasmus+ programme, SENTRY-SPORT aims at “surfacing, preventing and mediating discriminations through sport” and gathers, besides UISP and Efus, four associations that promote social cohesion: the International Sports and Culture Association (ISCA, Denmark), Red Deporte (Spain), the Vienna Institute for International Dialogue and Cooperation (Austria), and Koinsep en Drasei (Greece).

Following up on the MATCH-SPORT project

This 30-month project (January 2021-June 2023) follows up on the MATCH-SPORT project (January 2019-June 2021) for the prevention of discriminatory violence in amateur sport, which was led by Efus and in which UISP was a partner. The work carried out through MATCH-SPORT, in particular its state-of-the-art study of the prevalence of discrimination in amateur sport in Europe and promising practices of prevention, will feed into SENTRY-SPORT. 

Detecting discrimination and supporting victims

SENTRY-SPORT seeks to develop a common methodology for the monitoring, prevention and mitigation of discrimination in sporting venues with an emphasis on the role of amateur sport in tackling discrimination and supporting victims. The core idea is that many sport practitioners and fans are potential victims of discrimination because of the colour of their skin, their gender orientation, their religion etc., so it makes sense to target preventive actions in sport venues. 

Another important aspect of the project is victim support. Indeed, incidents of discrimination are in large part underreported, which means that victims do not receive support. The project will seek to involve sport professionals (club managers, coaches, sport educators…) in detecting discrimination, working as mediators to diffuse potential conflicts and supporting victims. They will be what the project calls ‘sentinels’, watching out for any manifestation of discrimination in their sport venue/environment, and supporting victims.  

A common methodology 

The project will create an online collaborative platform for the partners and all other interested parties to share experiences and know-how, and will network in order to bring on board as many relevant organisations as possible. 

It will develop a toolkit that will include promising practices, an overview of the situation in each of the six participating countries (Austria, Denmark, France, Greece, Italy, Spain), and guidelines for developing a pilot project. The MATCH-SPORT state-of-the-art will be a useful resource in this respect. 

A toolkit and a training programme will be created for sport professionals. The representatives of each partner organisation will attend this training, as will representatives from the cities that will be selected to be ‘ambassadors’ of the project. 

Furthermore, a number of pilot events will be organised in different European cities in order to test the methodology. 

Political recommendations

Based on the insights garnered through the project, Efus will draft policy recommendations for local and regional authorities. Over the course of the project, it will also organise pilot events in three European cities. Lastly, it will organise the project’s final event, in the spring of 2023.

> Stay tuned here and on Efus Network for updates on this new project! 
> For more information, please contact MartĂ­ Navarro RegĂ s (navarroregas@efus.eu)