Regional cooperation in sports / yes we can

Couple days ago, ministers and directors responsible for sports from Montenegro, Croatia, Slovenia and Serbia signed a Charter on regional cooperation in the field of university sports, during Regional ministerial conference. This is not the first initiative from region, but bearing in mind that initiative is regarding sport for all (university sports), this gives a momentum for prosperity. Obviously, region has a long way to go, especially when is sport seen only through the prism of professional sport and a results oriented philosophy. Media from Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro, devoted significant amount of space/time for this initiative. Initially, IBSL Basketball along with VTB Group supported (technically and financially) start of Regional university league in Basketball. For 2014-15 is planned to involve several other sports (volleyball, futsal and handball).

ImageOn another hand, I am aware that establishing of the regional competition will have impact on existing ones. There are many examples. At the European soil, EUSA as umbrella institution of university sports is responsible for development of university sports. The question arises whether this regional initiative harms the interest of EUSA? You may answer this question with another question: What format of the competitions are EUSA implementing?

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Sports promote social cohesion, youth mobility, and cultural exchanges. Sport seen from IOC perspective means a philosophy of life, exalting and combining in a balanced whole the qualities of body, will and mind. Blending sport with culture and education, Olympism seeks to create a way of life based on the joy of effort, the educational value of good example, social responsibility and respect for universal fundamental ethical principles. The goal of Olympism is to place sport at the service of the harmonious development of humankind, with a view to promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity.

From regional (historical) perspective, sport is a vehicle or catalyst for positive societal change (political as well) which make safer road to reach sustainable peace. Regional sport stakeholders finally understood great potential that sports offers by signing historical Charter enabling joint effort to improve overall society. Finally, partners from international sports organizations will need to understand, that for this region this more than a sport. This is finally a chance for all dispute to be resolve in the sporting arena.

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