9 March 2005: Sport
teaches "skills and values essential
to life," and can help countries achieve
the Millennium Development Goals,
Mr. Adolf Ogi, UN Secretary-General
Kofi Annan's Special Adviser on Sport
for Development and Peace told a seminar
today in Helsinki, Finland. The event
was held in connection with the International
Year of Sport and Physical Education
Finland is encouraging sport-related development initiatives. For example, the Finnish Basketball Association's FinnDo Basketball School in Bosnia helps reconciliation among ethnic communities, and a sports club is providing new and used soccer balls for primary schools in Tanzania.
Mr. Ogi, former president of Switzerland, reported that on a recent visit to Colombia and Brazil, where he met President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, he saw programmes to attract young people away from risks on the streets to healthier sports activities. He also pointed out that UNHCR works with the organization Right to Play to bring sport to refugee camps all over the world, and that a cricket series last year between India and Pakistan helped improve relations.
"Sport, thanks to its global cross-cutting capacities in human development, can add tremendous positive value to international development work," Mr. Ogi concluded.
The seminar, on the theme "Put the ball on the move - Global development with sport," was organized by the Finnish Sports Federation, Sports Development Aid (Liike ry) and the Ministry of Education.
the IYSPE web site at www.un.org/sport2005
and for further information please
Michael Kleiner, Office for the
International Year of Sport and Physical
Education - IYSPE 2005, United Nations,
-tel:+ 41 22 917 25 55)
Richard Leonard (email@example.com
- tel: 212-457-1254) or Nadia Samadani
- tel. 212-457-1069), United Nations
New York Office of Sport for Development