The European Week of Sport is an annual event, taking place from 23-30 September all over Europe. As an official partner of the initiative ENGSO and ENGSO Youth participate and organise several events and activities during that week.
This year’s edition of the European Week of Sport focused on three important pillars of sport, which also reflected the contemporary changes and the directions our societies are going towards: involvement, inclusion, and innovation.
The official Opening of the European Week of Sport 2023 took place in Valencia, Spain, on 23 September 2023. ENGSO Secretary General Sara Massini and ENGSO project manager / ENGSO Youth Committee member Alessia De Iulis participated in the opening.
The Opening was held right outside the Ciudad de las Artes y las Ciencias after the morning Plogging Race, the first event in Europe combining sport and physical activity with the aim to environment protection. Among the present guests were EWoS regional authorities of sport from the Valencian Community, representative of the DG Education, Youth, Sport and Culture of European Commission Georg Haeusler, young EWoS ambassadors and the president of the Consejo Superior de Deporte.
Throughout the day it was possible to enter the sports village and engage in several activities with EWoS young ambassadors and the president of the Consejo Superior del Deporte.
On 26 September 2023, ENGSO and ENGSO Youth joined forces with European Lotteries and Panathlon International, and organised an event under the theme “Sport Integrity as an accelerator for inclusion and involvement in sport”, which was held in Brussels, Belgium.
The event welcomed world-class athletes, the Youth Ambassadors of the Youth Integrity Ambassadors Programme (YIAP), Panathlon International Board Members, ENGSO, ENGSO Youth, European Week of Sports authorities, EL members and experts from the field of sport.
“Integrity is a crucial aspect, if we want to include and involve more people in sport and push more citizens to be active we need to keep our sport environment clean, safe, fair and value centred”, were the welcoming words of Marie Denitton, ENGSO Office Director and main coordinator of the YIAP project for the Swedish Sport Confederation.
Panathlon International awarded Jolien Boumkwo for stepping up for the Belgium team and avoiding their disqualification from the EU championship in Poland.
The session continued with the presentation of the Youth Integrity Ambassadors Programme as an example of good practices within the youth and sport field by fostering youth empowerment and promoting a culture of integrity across sport clubs and organisations through a network of young ambassadors across Europe that act as multipliers and agents of change within their local realities.
One of the highlights of the event was the discussion around values and integrity in the sport field, brought up by 2 testimonies of Olympic Gymnast Laura Waem and World Champion Gymnast Wannes Vlaeminck. The other was, without any doubts, the presentation of YIAP local activities and experiences from the young integrity ambassadors, representing Special Olympics Europe Asia, EUSA and RF Småland.
The ambassadors then took the floor to play with the audience “Is it Fairplay or not?”, and engage with them in discussions about integrity, fairplay and values in the sport field.
Speaking for the three hosting organisations during the conclusions of the event, Alvise Angelini (Senior Policy Officer & Sport Secretary at EL) launched their joint action plan for 2024, to continue fostering “Involvement, Inclusion and Innovation” and continue the work on integrity.