Sport Education without Borders
Exchange programme between students of CIOS in Haarlem and sportleaders from Mutare, Zimbabwe.
From 27 October until 21 November 16, 2008, Mutare Haarlem Sportleaders (MHS) visited the Netherlands and CIOS. They also joined the 60 year CIOS anniversary celebrations on 31 October.
The unique exchange was facilitated by Xplore, a subsidised programme designed for youths between the ages of twelve and thirty. Xplore is financed by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Development Co-operation. Through the Xplore programme, youths can join an exchange programme, do voluntary work, or do an internship in developing countries. In this way, students can experience why development co-operation is so important, and share this with others
With the exchange, sportleaders from Mutare get the opportunity to get acquainted with another culture, learn about sports and gain professional skills. Afterwards, they may use this knowledge in their own communities.
Zimbabwe suffers from an enormous economic crisis, with hyperinflation at and an employment rate of just 20%. Especially youths are affected by unemployment, poverty and hopeless prospects. In 2001, the City Link Haarlem-Mutare, in co-operation with two CIOS teachers and many CIOS (former) students, set up a sport project for the promotion of sports participation in Mutare. Presently, in Mutare, the ‘Mutare Haarlem Sportleaders’ is operational, an organisation for and run by unemployed youths. The organisation has no less than sixty trained sportleaders, providing sport activities on a daily basis in Mutare. Particularly, during these severe times in Zimbabwe, the City Link and the CIOS wish to support sportleaders in Mutare.
The CIOS students and the MHS sportleaders exchanged knowledge and techniques, on how to kick a ball, on how to introduce sports in schools and different city quarters, on how to use sports in tackling the HIV/Aids epidemic, and on how to organise a sport event.
Godfrey: I enjoyed CIOS a lot. I learnt how to plan; how to organise events and how to manage time. I joined many lessons: the fitness course, tennis, international sport development, organisation of events, climbing, ice-skating, and the performance at CIOS 60th Anniversary.
Taurai (volleyball player): The volleyball teacher was very welcoming; I really enjoyed that lesson! Also the mountain climbing at the CIOS Indore Climbing Wall was very exciting! We were assisted by a CIOS student.
Joseph: “The four lessons for fitness were great and very helpful for the sportleaders. It made a MHS dream come true. Yes, we had plans to run a fitness centre, but the knowledge was not there. After the four lessons we got, we can facilitate exercises. A challenge is to procure the machine and to renovate the Chikanga Sport Complex building.”
Some of the sportleaders visited SportSupport, an organisation that encourages specific target groups to engage in sport. Although target groups might differ, the work of sportleaders from Mutare and SportSupport employees is very similar.
Another visit was to the Johan Cruijff Foundation, main sponsor of the sport project in Mutare. Amongst others, they discussed how the present situation in Zimbabwe affects the sport project. They also talked about sports for the disabled, an important target group for the Johann Cruijff Foundation.
There were many more visits to foundations (such as Spirit of Sport Foundation), NGO’s, sport clubs and sport federations. The exchange certainly made MHS more widely known. Hopefully, this also means more support and funding in future.
Fifteen students of the ROC Nova College, CIOS, in Haarlem were to do an internship in Mutare in 2008. Because of political turmoil in Zimbabwe, however, the internships were postponed to a later date. CIOS would like to have a permanent relationship with sportleaders in Mutare, so that internships will be fully fledged in future. CIOS will examine how to obtain accreditation for the MHS courses in Mutare.
Xplore Exchange 2008
Would you like to know more?
Miriam Creighton, Teacher International Sport Development, supervisor of ‘Sport education without Borders’.