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  • A grand arrival for MOVE Congress “urban orienteers”
    In a MOVE Congress first, two groups of delegates set off to discover Rome in an “urban orienteering” session after the formal sessions wound to a close on 23 October.  They were guided by two Italians (and their skilled translators) who knew Rome’s ancient and modern urban planning and inside and out – Dr. Renato Sebastiani from the Italian Ministry of Culture, and Gianluca Di Girolami, an archaeologist and President of UISP Roma. The 5km and 2km walks were each dotted with ancient monuments and unexpected “Flash Moves” along the way, including a fire dancer, hopscotch outside Circus Maximus and young contemporary dancers. But the grand finale was waiting for the urban orienteers at 6pm at Capitoline Square. ISCA and UISP Presidents Mogens Kirkeby and Vincenzo Manco were part of the welcoming committee, along with State Secretary to the Italian Prime Minister, Graziano Delrio. The Mayor of Rome also sent his greetings to the Congress organisers and participants. The event concluded with dances performed by nine different groups, and a rendition of the MOVE Week flash mob, which saw ISCA staff, national coordinators and other onlookers joining in a prominently placed celebration of the MOVE Congress and the NowWeMOVE campaign. By Rachel Payne 
    A grand arrival for MOVE Congress “urban orienteers”
  • Breaking barriers to healthier lifestyles
    On the first full day of the MOVE Congress 2014, the participants heard good examples of how better nutrition and physical education can lead to a healthier lifestyle, from very experienced speakers, during the Healthy Lifestyles parallel session 2. During the session, the good practice examples came from Italy and England, all with targeted actions channelled towards moving their communities. Andrea Vannuci, assessor of Sport Firenze, gave an Italian insight on the efforts to encourage healthy lifestyles among citizens, stressing that “walking is the right way to healthy aging”. Therefore, Walking People (WAP) and “Firenze, the walking city”, with 97 kilometres walkable paths in the historical and most attractive parts of the city, is one of the projects that aims to combine the tourism and health perspective. Valerio Neri, the CEO of Save the Children Italy, brought another relevant point on the table of good practices. Following the worrying results in Italy about the level of poverty among children, with more than 1 million children in absolute poverty, a high number of these children find themselves obese, due to bad nutrition. What Save the Children Italy is doing is advocating on the benefits of physical activity in the schools that the children are attending. Their research has proven that this technique works and improvement has been seen, with little to no relapse in the groups targeted. A familiar project was Active Parks, from Birmingham, where Steve Bedser and Leanne Gregory presented a follow up of their pilot project, started in 2013 – 2014. The project started after the need to make a change in the worrying numbers of inactive citizens in Birmingham (26% obese citizens and 80% inactive). With only 5 parks involved in the beginning, the number increased to 50 parks and open spaces, and people have been more active than ever before. The target group are people that would not normally go to a gym or fitness club, because of the financial situation or because they feel they do not fit in due to their ethnic backgrounds. An important aspect was mentioned by Steve Bedser during his speech, which is an important barrier that prevents people from being physically active: “In a city like Birmingham, the fundamental barrier to participation is cost, and that is why we took a bold move, even in a time of austerity, to remove cost as a barrier, so one of our underlined principles, is free participation. But the investment to make it free is nothing compared to the savings that it will bring.” In fact, for every 1 pound invested, 21 pounds are gained in return. The whole idea of the Active Parks Birmingham project is to “bring people together to have fun, to connect with one another and enjoy their open spaces”. By Roxana ChiriacPhoto sourced from Steve Bedser and Leanne Gregory's presentation 
    Breaking barriers to healthier lifestyles
  • Urban planning – Cities without barriers
    The moderator of the parallel session 1 on Thursday of the MOVE Congress 2014, René Kural, from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, introduced the topic of urban planning with a humorous twist. He went on to invite urban designer, planner and researcher from Centro de Estudos de Arquitectura e Urbanismo at Faculdade de Arquitectura da Universidade do Porto, Daniel Casas Valle, to the stage, who talked about the topic ’Sport in the city’. He went through how our lifestyle has changed a lot in the past decades: “We sit down at work a lot,” he said before addressing what could be done to change this. One of the most important things is the public space: “It matters! As meeting places, for exercising and recreation. Some sports have space demanding requirements like football pitches and need large areas. Other sports can practically take place everywhere,” Daniel Casas Valle explained. One of the really good ways to develop great public spaces is to make sporting facilities at schools more open because they can be used for several target groups – on schooldays by pupils and at the weekends by the public. “Another excellent way to use public spaces for physical activity is to take advantage of construction sites as temporary public sports facilities and make Plug ’n play spots for physical activity or recreation,” Casas Valle concluded. Next up was Seattle Parks and Recreation’s David Graves with a presentation on how to be a good neighbour to your neighbourhood parks. First he told the audience about his home city, which is surrounded by water. Ten percent of the city is comprised of parks, there are 100+ miles of trails and every resident has access to an open space within each quarter mile. One of the plans to create more recreational urban areas is to turn water reservoirs into public parks and hold more events like Big Day of Play and other great opportunities for people that the city does not typically connect with. “To conclude, it’s about thinking differently and providing opportunities for the public,” Graves said before handing the microphone to the next speaker. Member of Italian Parliament Laura Coccia’s agenda revolves around sport and accessibility in Italy. A lot of disabled people have poor conditions all over the country as well as others with different limitations. “Football Stadiums are the most attended sports places in Italy. They are not equipped to host disabled persons. The same goes for parents with carriages who have difficulties in getting into, for example, parks because of stairs and steps,” she said, explaining that it is crucial to develop recreational spaces and that it is something for the government and local authorities to change. And it is not only facilities that are an issue. Laura Coccia wants more attention to be paid to physical education and concluded: “Schools should not only be about teaching in curriculum but in movement and physical activity as well.” The session ended with Luca Rizzo Nervo from the Ministry of Sport, Comune di Bologna. He shared his experiences on economic factors in urban sports facility planning. Initially Nervo presented plans for new high-concentration pedestrian areas in Bologna and a two-way bike path forming a ring around the city centre. Afterwards he presented various projects in the city: • Badabene Project (health and wellbeing for elderly people) • Parks in Motion (free opportunities in city parks) • MuoviBO Project (targeting people with a sedentary lifestyle) The session concluded with Nervo telling about Bologna’s iPhone app created for walking routes in the urban areas of the city that is actually fulfilling the recommendations of the WHO in terms of physical activity. Lastly he played a video presenting the app. By Alexander Elverlund
    Urban planning – Cities without barriers
  • An open and active city does not materialise by itself
    Cities cannot become open and active spaces by themselves. And citizens are unlikely to spontaneously use their cities as outdoor gyms, walking or cycle paths unless they have the right conditions to give them a little push in the right direction. In Thursday’s plenary session at the MOVE Congress 2014, Open City – Active City from an urban perspective, two experts from very different sectors came to similar conclusions that could give urban planners, local governments, sports facility designers and the average citizen food for thought. Roberto Pella, member of the EDUC commission of the EU’s Committee of the Regions (CoR), put the spotlight on public institutions as being a starting point to putting more funding into providing cycle paths, green spaces and open facilities, as well as renovating obsolete and unsafe facilities. But this also means raising awareness among these key stakeholders about the vital link between sport and health: “National authorities – and I mean governments and representatives of sport institutions – are bodies that somehow don’t have enough insight into the fundamental will to invest in sport and physical activity at the community level,” he said. “In Italy, 83% of budgets at the regional level are focused on health. But if we were really to invest in improving our citizens’ health, we should take part of this budget and allocate it to health enhancing sport and physical activity.” Activating these important stakeholders is a challenge that organisations at the grassroots level are taking on themselves, which he praised: “Key actors in sport and physical activity are working together every day, fighting against the red tape and they need to ask that the European plan to re-launch investments is focused on physical activity.”  Don’t underestimate the factors involved in creating active citiesThe second keynote speaker, Remco Hoekman, a senior researcher from the Mulier Institute in the Netherlands, said that while he agreed governments and local authorities were essential links in the chain, there are many aspects of urban planning that need to come together to make cities more open and active. “The physical environment does influence the behaviour of the individual. But there is not one factor or set of factors that can account for what people do,” he said. To redesign neighbourhoods to make them more inviting for citizens to be physically active means engaging the transport sector, which can reduce or slow down traffic and improve paths for pedestrians and cyclists. It also means tackling social issues that can make public playgrounds or parks safer spaces for children. Or it could involve a creative workplace installing “piano stairs” to make it fun for workers to choose an alternative to taking the elevator. Very importantly, he emphasised, the citizen should be at the centre of this planning and be able to contribute their own ideas. “You have to place facilities in the right context,” he said. “It is not enough to put a facility into a neighbourhood. You have to cater for the desires of the neighbourhood.” An exercise bike bench located in a park outside an elderly home was just one example of looking outside the box while serving a sometimes forgotten part of the community in the right place – it took some time to catch on at first, but it worked. Good ideas are often underestimated – but maybe they can be the key to unlocking active cities. By Rachel PaynePhoto sourced from Remco Hoekman's presentation
    An open and active city does not materialise by itself
  • Kick-off meeting for European Platform Active Ageing in Sport (EPAAS)
    Prior to the opening of the MOVE Congress 2014, a kick-off meeting that launched the “European Platform Active Ageing in Sport” (EPAAS) took place, moderated by Herbert Hartmann, ISCA Vice President from Deutscher Turner-Bund (DTB). About 17 partners were present at the meeting and had the opportunity to present their work in the field, which focused on different angles from research, to training ambassadors for face-to-face approaches to the inactive elderly. Many goals are envisioned for the new platform, such as establishing new partnerships, stimulating new projects and opening up new cross-sector collaborations. Building constructive partnerships was one of the topics addressed, and EPAAS will provide favourable opportunities to do so, as it is difficult to stand alone in the sport sector, especially when it comes to funding. “The sport organisations are less able to develop their own strategy, and from our experience, they work for themselves and they don’t spread out, they don’t cooperate,” Hartmann said. “That is why the challenge to promote physical activity for elderly people is too big for one stakeholder only. Therefore, constructive partnerships between different stakeholders and sectors is a necessary consequence, and EPAAS is a logical remark to that, and it must provide several opportunities.” There are many burning topics that will be debated in the near future, but what is for sure is that this is a starting point and the platform will provide a base for good cooperation in the grassroots sport sector in the field of Active Ageing. As Mimi Rodriguez Adami from FIAF SIAF stated: “Do we need more evidence? What we need is to act!” That was the atmosphere at the meeting, where all the partners were excited and came with good ideas, determined to the build solid foundations of an effective platform. By Roxana Chiriac 
    Kick-off meeting for European Platform Active Ageing in Sport (EPAAS)
A grand arrival for MOVE Congress “urban orienteers”
In a MOVE Congress first, two groups of delegates set off to discover Rome in an “urban orienteering” session after the formal sessions wound to a close on 23 October.  They were guided by two Italians (and their skilled translators) who knew Rome’s ancient and modern urban planning and inside and out – Dr. Renato Sebastiani from the Italian Ministry of Culture, and Gianluca Di Girolami, an archaeologist and President of UISP Roma. The 5km and 2km walks were each dotted with ancient monuments and unexpected “Flash Moves” along the way, including a fire dancer, hopscotch outside Circus Maximus and young contemporary dancers. But the grand finale was waiting for the urban orienteers at 6pm at Capitoline Square. ISCA and UISP Presidents Mogens Kirkeby and Vincenzo Manco were part of the welcoming committee, along with State Secretary to the Italian Prime Minister, Graziano Delrio. The Mayor of Rome also sent his greetings to the Congress organisers and participants. The event concluded with dances performed by nine different groups, and a rendition of the MOVE Week flash mob, which saw ISCA staff, national coordinators and other onlookers joining in a prominently placed celebration of the MOVE Congress and the NowWeMOVE campaign. By Rachel Payne 

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NowWeMOVE is a European-wide campaign to promote sport and physical activity. The cross-sector vision of the campaign to get “100 million more Europeans active in sport and physical activity by 2020”. MOVE Week is an annual Europe-wide event and an integral part of the NowWeMOVE campaign. This year, MOVE Week will take place from 29 September to 5 October.

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This year one of Europe’s oldest, most populated and most visited cities will provide a fitting backdrop for the MOVE Congress 2014 and its theme Open city – Active city. from 22 to 25 October 2014 in Rome-Italy.

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MOVE Quality aims to identify initiatives which inspire more people to be physically active, build the capacity of the organisations delivering them and reward their achievements with a Quality Mark.

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ISCA has created MOVE Transfer as a process of identifying physical activity initiatives for hard-to-reach populations that have run successfully in one setting and transferring them to a new setting (new organisation, new community).

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Good Governance in Grassroots Sport Self Assessment Tool: an interactive online tool providing a range of information and templates across three themes of governance and four principles. Start your self assessment now!

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OTHER ISCA ACTIVITIES

Active Network

The ACTIVE Network project has identified partnerships between local authorities and sport organizations to be of such critical value...

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MOVE&Learn

Training on-line tool for non-formal Education through Sport and physical activities with young people.

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