Sport and the Millennium Development Goals
Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Providing development opportunities will help fight poverty. The sports industry, as well as the organisation of large sports events, create opportunities for employment. Sport provides life skills essential for a productive life in society.
Goal 2: Achieve universal primary education
Sport and physical education are an essential element of quality education. They promote positive values and skills which have a quick but lasting impact on young people. Sports activities and physical education generally make school more attractive and improve attendance.
Goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women
Increasing access for women and girls to physical education and sport helps them build confidence and a stronger social integration. Involving girls into sport activities alongside with boys can help overcome prejudice that often contribute to social vulnerability of women and girls in a given society.
Goals 4 & 5: Reduce child mortality and improve maternal health
Sport can be an effective means to provide women with a healthy lifestyle as well as to convey important messages as these goals are often related to empowerment of women and access to education.
Goal 6: Combat HIV/Aids, malaria and other diseases
Sport can help reach out to otherwise difficult to reach populations and provide positive role-models delivering prevention messages. Sport, through its inclusiveness and mostly informal structure, can effectively assist in overcoming prejudice, stigma and discrimination by favouring improved social integration.
Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
Sport is ideal to raise awareness about the need to preserve the environment. The interdependency between the regular practice of outdoor sports and the protection of the environment are obvious for all to realise.
Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development
Sport offers endless opportunities for innovative partnerships for development and can be used as a tool to build and foster partnerships between developed and developing nations to work towards achieving the millennium development goals. Goal 8 acknowledges that in order for poor countries to achieve the first 7 goals, it is absolutely critical that rich countries deliver on their end of the bargain with more and more effective aid, sustainable debt relief and fairer trade rules for poor countries -- well in advance of 2015.