The final meeting of the Athletics 4 Health team in Vienna

In the first days of December, the final meeting of the international team of the Athletics 4 Health project, led by the Polish Athletics Association, took place in Vienna.

During the two-day meeting in the building housing numerous Austrian sports associations, including athletics, the team’s activities so far were discussed. The results of surveys and research conducted in recent months are presented. The discussion was also focused on the final conclusions of the team’s work. Representatives of the five federations participating in the project discussed what the final document should look like. As noted during the discussion, it should include, among others: instructions on how to diversify financial resources. This is to have a direct impact on improving activities related to the development of athletics. The final document is to be an important argument during talks with institutions financing various branches of sport, but also education.

  • We want the conducted analyzes to have a direct impact on subsequent modifications of the ownership status and the organization of athletics classes and trainings in Poland – said the respected scientist Professor Janusz Iskra, who is the leader of the scientific team in the project.

The participants now have several months of work to prepare the aforementioned final document. In Vienna, the areas that will be dealt with by individual countries in the near future have been established. The final material will be published by the end of 2023. Next year, there will also be sports competitions for children, in which young players from the countries participating in the project will take part. According to preliminary plans, the event will be organized in Opole. During the discussions in Vienna, the organization of these competitions was one of the key issues.

The participants could also get acquainted with Polish projects promoting athletics. Polish representatives presented material on the recent Athletics Olympic Hopes project, which gathered thousands of young sports adepts at the start.

Representatives of the five athletic associations involved also discussed further cooperation. On the part of the Bulgarian federation, there was a proposal to engage in a project related to the fight against doping, violence, harassment and other abuses.

– As in the case of the Athletics 4 Health project, Poland was the project leader, so in the case of this action we would be the leading federation. By the end of 2023, all associations associated in World Athletics should have such guidelines, so when obtaining external funds and working together, and we have already invited, among others, Poland and Austria, we can achieve success – said Maya Karamarinova from the Bulgarian athletics federation in Vienna.

The Athletics 4 Health project is implemented as part of partnership cooperation of athletic associations from five countries: Poland, Austria, Finland, Bulgaria and Slovakia. The leading role is held by the Polish Athletics Association, which was its initiator. The task is to be completed by December 31, 2023. The assumption of the project is to examine the current situation in youth athletics, analyze problems related to practicing sports and obtain detailed knowledge about the current needs of parents, children and sports clubs.

The Athletics4Health project is implemented thanks to the funds of the European Union as part of the Erasmus+ project.

Maciej Jałoszyński, Pawel Jesień

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