Saturday, April 6, 2019

Schools : Intl Day of Sport 4 Peace & Development : resources & activities

International Day of Sport
for Development and Peace

"Regardless of age, gender or ethnicity, sport is enjoyed by all; its reach is unrivalled. More importantly, though, sport promotes universal values that transcend language and culture, particularly inclusion. History abounds with examples of inspiring stories of how expanding sporting opportunity leads to greater inclusion in society overcoming prejudice against women, ethnic minorities and people living with a disability."

Audrey Azoulay, Directrice générale UNESCO

Today, the 6 April we are celebrating the 6th International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. 

In August 2013(link is external), the UN General Assembly made the decision to proclaim 6 April as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace.

Due to its vast reach, unparalleled popularity and foundation of positive values, sport is ideally positioned to contribute towards the United Nations’ objectives for development and peace. 

Sport has historically played an important role in all societies, be it in the form of competitive sport, physical activity or play. But one may wonder: what does sport have to do with the United Nations? In fact, sport presents a natural partnership for the United Nations (UN) system.

International Day of Sport
for Development and Peace

Sports encourage:

  • Individual development
  • Health promotion and disease prevention
  • The promotion of gender equality
  • Social integration and the development of social capital
  • Peace building and conflict prevention/resolution
  • Post-disaster/trauma relief and normalisation of life
  • Economic development
  • Communication and social mobilisation

The adoption of this Day signifies the increasing recognition by the United Nations of the positive influence that sport can have on the advancement of human rights, and social and economic development.

“Sport has the power to change the world”.
Nelson Mandela

Sport can no longer be considered a luxury within any society but is rather an important investment in the present and future, particularly in developing countries.

International Day of Sport
for Development and Peace


Education in the 21st century increasingly recognizes the role of values and social skills in tackling global challenges, such as inactivity, obesity, unemployment, and conflict. This approach is at the core of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 on quality education, which advocates for inclusive lifelong learning opportunities and innovative content delivery.


Dynamic forms of values-based education using sport can be introduced in schools to support teachers deliver curricula actively and cooperatively.

credits: Elyx Yak

Sport can teach values such as fairness, teambuilding, equality, discipline, inclusion, perseverance and respect.
Sport has the power to provide a universal framework for learning values, thus contributing to the development of soft skills needed for responsible citizenship.

What can Values Education through Sport offer?

Values Education through Sport (VETS) programmes support active learning, complement cognitive skills and give students increasing amounts of responsibility, and enhance their level of concentration and participation.

VETS programmes are flexible and have a strong cross-curricular potential: they can reinforce existing curricula and can be streamed across different subjects, including physical education, civic and moral education, nutrition, biology, arts.

Ultimately, these programmes help students to transfer and put values into action.

Today, 1 in 4 adults worldwide is not active enough. For adolescents, the statistics are much worse. Lack of physical activity is also the leading cause for cardiovascular diseases such as cancer and diabetes. An active world is a healthier world for all. 

On 6 April, we celebrate the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace as a reminder that sport benefits us all mentally and physically as it aims to create a more sustainable global future. 

Sport is a pillar of a healthy society, at ease with itself, united in its diversity, based on human rights and equal dignity. It provides a field for passions to be shared, for communities to come together, for the disadvantaged to be empowered.

Kids & sport

Play is not only a child’s inalienable right – it also influences physical, socio-emotional and cognitive development. 

The right to play is protected in Article 31 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as the right to sport, which is specifically contained in other international treaties. 

via IAAF

"The broad consensus that regular physical activity is essential for the physical, mental, psychological and social development of children and adolescents. Involvement in sport can boost children’s health, improve academic performance and help reduce crime." 


via Yoga Journal

Today is Saturday, weekend for students and teachers. But next week on Monday or during two-three days teachers must propose different activities for their students in school. 

  • Organize a match, a yoga lesson, a tournament or games to raise awareness among participants about the formative values of sport 
  • Rally your school around a group action representing 6 April (parade, run for peace, flash mob, photo or video conveying a particular message, other).
  • Bring a sports personality, specialist or influential people from your community to lead a workshop with your students, or discuss the impact of sport on society.
  • Give free rein to your imagination and demonstrate to your students how sport can be a tool for peace and development (exhibition, dance, drawing).

In every society, sport is a field of dreams and a force for fabulous positive change - we must do everything to harness this power. 

credits: UNESCO

  • Links:
Gettin into the game | Unicef

About the Sport Programme | Unesco


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