CARE - Sport for social Change and Education

Head of the project:
Dr. Karen Petry

IESF staff entrusted with the project:
Dr. Marie Biermann, Robin Schröder

Period of research:
May 2016 – September 2018

CARE Germany-Luxemburg
Stiftung Hoffnung 1-plus

The project is implemented by OTAHARIN, an organisation that promotes education, inclusion and the rights of Roma. Financed by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), co-financed and initiated by the Stiftung Hoffnung 1-plus, coordinated by CARE Germany-Luxemburg,  the project addresses 40 children and youth in Bijeljina, a city in the north-east of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The participants consist of 70 percent Roma and 30 percent non-Roma children, all of whom do not go to school regularly. The Roma children especially face challenges related to prejudices and discrimination.

The present project is the first time that OTAHARIN includes sport activities, namely football in this case. Nonetheless, the project is based on a holistic approach: The participation in football training is directly linked to regular attendance in school, additional workshops with a focus on health issues are obligatory and the parents are incorporated in the educational process as well. In order to build the capacity to be able to attend these activities, the participants and their families are provided with scholarships.

The football training enhances physical activity and football-specific skills. However, it is rather meant to foster tolerance towards other ethnicities, respectful interaction and self-confidence among the participants. Thereby, the children and youth are to be given crucial support to change their attitude towards school, improve their school grades and therefore open up more opportunities for the future.

The role of the Institute of European Sport Development and Leisure Studies (IESF), financed by the GIZ, is mainly focused on three areas. First, in cooperation with the local coaches, strategies are compiled on how to adjust football training in order to achieve the project objectives. Second, a curriculum, which defines thematic areas and provides related drills and games, is developed. Finally, the scientific monitoring and evaluation of the programme is an essential task of the IESF team. Through quantitative and qualitative data collection before and after the intervention possible effects of the programme shall be determined.