Articles and magazines report that exercise can help reduce the risk for several diseases improving the overall quality of life. However, the proportion of the European population who never engage in physical activity remains worryingly high for adults and children.
The project was born from a group of researchers who works in different fields of social and medical science with the same interest and love of physical activity. We practiced sport during youth and we are exercising or playing sport regularly as adults, because we know from experience and knowledge that it is an essential aspect of our life. Moreover, for some of us physical activity is the research topic, with the mission to demonstrate the beneficial effects of regular physical activity, including the idea of promoting exercise and sport among youth, adults and aged people, because it is never too late or too early to do something for one’s own health.
Writing this project we decided to contribute to stimulating European people to establish healthy physical activity habits. Reading the appropriate scientific literature, looking back on our personal experience and observing the environment around us, in our opinion the only way to reverse the dramatic trend in Europe, regarding the indifference to practicing sport, was to establish physical activity habits at an early age, to incorporate elements of fun in the physical activity and to involve all family members.
The proposed idea was immediately loved by partners from 6 different European countries (Italy, Portugal, Turkey, Iceland, Croatia, and Spain). All partners’ organizations have contributed actively to develop the final project for the European Week of Sport (EWoS), Families Live European Week of Sport (FeEL EWoS). The project title and acronyms summarize perfectly our idea that European families should "live" and "feel" the EWoS: Live EWoS as an event celebrating the importance of physical activity; Feel the desire to be connected to others who are also becoming physically active, and become inspired to remain active and connected after EWoS.
The back bone of the project is the organization of a not-for-profit European sport contest for children (aged 6-14), conducted simultaneously in the 6 EU countries (Italy, Portugal, Turkey, Iceland, Croatia, and Spain) during the EWoS (19th-25th September 2016). During the project, 12,000 children will attend seminars related to themes promoted by the EWoS, and they will perform many different sport activities. During the weekend a “Family sport & recreation festival” will be organized to involve the family members (at least 24,000 person). Moreover, the involvement of around 180 volunteers, Ambassadors of Sport, will make it possible to hold the planned activities and will make the concept that exercise is fundamental for a good quality of life more widespread.
One of the innovative aspects of the project is the massive use of internet and social networks to showcase the sport event and raise awareness about the beneficial effects of the regular physical activity. In particular, one section of the project aims to enable the physical activities conducted by the children in the 6 European countries to be broadcasted in streaming and downloaded on YouTube and on other social networks to give to their parents and relatives (and, virtually, everyone worldwide) the possibility to see - from home, work or everywhere - their children playing sports.
The project is that the project is co-funded by the EU for 80% (€ 267,442) and for this reason, we are looking for sponsors that could be interested in supporting the other 20% (€ 66,856) totally or in part. To the sponsors will be guaranteed high visibility on all printed/digital promotional documents and sport gadgets used for the event (including T-shirts provided to children and volunteers), as well as during radio, web and television interviews and reports.
We will contribute to changing the physical activity habits of 12,000 children, which will inspire the members of their family, which in turn could inspire others around the world (considering the six degrees of separation theory).
Please, “feel” EWoS, get inspired to be active and contribute to making the whole world more active.