International Day of Sport for Development and Peace 2022

The impact of sport on people and on the sustainability of the planet itself is indisputable. Sport crosses borders and plays a fundamental role as transmitter of values ​​and ethical principles in society. On a personal level, its benefits are also innumerable, since it helps to ensure our physical and mental health. But this positive impact of sport goes much further and, aware of this, the United Nations promoted in 2013 a day to recognize its importance: the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace.

Since then, every April 6, the world has been touting the importance of sport for development and world peace. The United Nations has decided to fix this commemorative day exactly every April 6taking as a reference the date on which the first Olympic Games were held, held in Athens (Greece), which took place in 1896.

The UN pointed out the reasons which led it to declare on April 6 International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. The main one is that sport, through its various manifestations (competitions, games, physical activity, etc.), is a fundamental human right recognized by UNESCO since 1978. More than a century has passed since those first Olympic Games, and in all these years sport has been a means of escape and a tool for development, especially now, in the face of the challenges of the pandemic.

Sport at the service of development and peace, a priority issue of the 2030 Agenda

Sport contributes to our health, individually and collectively, at all levels, but it is also an area that provides jobs and income to millions of people around the world. the essential role that sport plays in our society This is an aspect that has been included in the Declaration of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Sport is recognized as an “important facilitator” of sustainable development, as well as its contribution to social progress (promotion of tolerance and respect, empowerment of women and young people, as well as social inclusion).

The role of sport as an agent of change is one of the main issues considered by the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In this agenda, the UN establishes a plan to achieve a total of 17 goals before 2030 and, part of them, recognize the role of sport in social progress. In this sense and taking into account the current situation in the world, with reinforced and latent conflicts, it is particularly worth highlighting Goal 16: Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies.

This is why the UN and UNESCO recognize the role of sport as valuable tool for conflict prevention and the promotion of lasting peace, “since sport and its universality have the ability to transcend cultures.” Besides:

– Regular participation in sports and physical activities generates various social and health benefits: it promotes healthy lifestyles for children and young people.

– The practice of sport helps the Mental Health (reduces anxiety and depression) and promotes positive cognitive development.

– Solidarity initiatives linked to sport make it possible to open spaces for care and to reinforce positive attitudes and tolerance.

– Sport empowers young people from disadvantaged communities by being their tool for progress: it promotes inclusion and unites people.

There are innumerable benefits that sport provides across the world to different societies and cultures. Today, April 6, International Day of Sport for Development and Peace 2022, we have a unique opportunity to bring sport to the fore and recognize its relevanceas well as the values ​​of tolerance, respect and dialogue that underpin it, which are more than necessary to face the barbarity of wars.

Leave a Comment