News

International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

6 April 2019
Young girls of Zadrime, Albania in their traditional dresses

The National Albanian Olympic Committee and UNFPA Albania have partnered to use sport as a tool for social change and engage young people in joint activities aiming at information sharing, promotion of healthy lifestyles and entertainment.

Both organizations have used sport events such as the Week of the Olympic Games or the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace to build cultural understanding and to promote education, information sharing, healthy behaviors, peaceful environment and youth engagement in economic and social development .

April 6, the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace aims to promote a healthy lifestyle and encourage an olympic movement to create a peaceful environment and promote access to sports for young people and public at large.

This day is dedicated to working with the community and it is intended to enrich the life of children and young people through sports, by bringing together known sportsmen, teachers and parents and community members.

This year, UNFPA joined the Albanian National Olympic Committee in a series of sports activities in Zadrima, Lezha. A total of 500 children, parents and teachers from three Zadrima villages organized a festive ceremony, and a series of sports like volleyball, basketball, racing. These festive and sports activity aimed to promote healthy lifestyles in peaceful communities. Young people had prepared an exhibition on gender equality, using recycled materials. They also performed a small theater role play, giving the message "STOP Child Marriage!". Craftsman and local culture were also promoted through the artistic part of the ceremony.

In his openin g remarks, the President of the Albanian NOC, Viron Bezhani thanked hundreds of young participants and encouraged them to join sports. He also called on other participants to become more active in sports and make that part of their daily life. The activity was also greeted by Elsona Agolli, UNFPA Gender Program Analyst, who underlined the importance of "Investing in young people, especially young girls, so that they stay in school rather than get married at early ages, they get empowered and enabled to achieve their dreams, desires and passions, and are enabled to make their own decisions about their lives and bodies, thus realizing their full potential in life."

This event was part of UNFPA 50th anniversary celebrations in Albania, and the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development.