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  • Interview with the World Cycling Alliance steering board member Klaus Bondam: Active transport has enormous potential
    Klaus Bondam is a cycling advocate who is making his mark on the active transport sector both in his home country, Denmark, and internationally. He is the Director of the Danish Cyclists' Federation and has now been appointed to the steering board of the World Cycling Alliance - an initiative of ISCA and NowWeMOVE partner the European Cyclists' Federation. With the start of the Journey of Hope cross-border cycling tour unfolding on the Danish Cyclists' Federation's doorstep, we took the opportunity to ask Klaus why he believes cycling is such an important mode of transport, how he believes Danes can improve their cycling etiquette and what the World Cycling Alliance's ambitions are going forward. Why do you see an event like the Journey of Hope as being important and what are the messages you see coming out of it?Klaus Bondam: I think every event that moves around, active mobility, is very, very important because it is one of the challenges in our society is facing these years: How do we, as human beings, become more active in a time where more and more of us are sitting down at computers. That activity can be recreational cycling, going on longer trips as we see here. We are very strong at here in Copenhagen and Denmark, where you have a lot of everyday cyclists, people who go to work every day by bicycle, kids who go to school on the bicycle, parents who cycle together in the city. So I do hope that events like this create both national knowledge that we are actually quite good at this in Denmark, and we do have an expertise that other countries can benefit from, and hopefully other events where other countries get inspire by what we’re doing in Denmark. Now of course, this is also an EU-funded project, so we, the Danish Cyclists’ Federation and also the European Cyclists’ Federation – where we are founding members and also in the World Cycling Alliance, where I’m on the steering group – we are very happy that politically it seems that there is a rising understanding of the contributions that cycling can make. You talk about how Denmark can inspire other nations, but what could Denmark learn from other nations like this when they come on this sort of international tour? Are there things that Denmark can still learn?Klaus Bondam: Yes, of course, because we do in Denmark have some issues with behaviour on the bicycle path – people not paying enough attention to each other – and I think that is one thing we can learn from the rest of the world, and basically being a bit more observant of other people and saying “excuse me” and “please” a little more. That’s something we’re not very good at in Denmark. You mentioned the World Cycling Alliance, what are the ambitions for the alliance and what sort of work have you already been doing?Klaus Bondam: Like the European Cyclists’ Federation it’s a political organisation, so it’s about lobbying policy makers and decision takers to implement cycling as a part of our daily life. And especially at a time when we see, at least in Europe, the number of cars going up and up and up, we do face some big challenges with CO2 emissions, public health and all these kinds of things. But I think probably the most interesting work of the World Cycling Alliance is basically linking the benefits you can have from cycling to the fulfilment of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, because we actually do see that cycling can contribute to 11 out of the 17 SDGs. For example creating resilient cities, helping to reduce poverty by creating affordable modes of transportation, such as peasants going from the countryside into the city selling their things, delivering services, and all these kinds of things.And the Danish Cyclists' Federation has also run its own campaign in May, the Bike to Work campaign. How did that go? How was the response?Klaus Bondam: We’ve done that for years in Denmark, since 1997, I think. So it’s an old lady. It’s going well. I’d say it’s a very integrated part of office life in Denmark. A lot of offices participate in that campaign. The good thing about it is that it does create new cyclists every year. We know that from service people, who are not used to cycling who actually start cycling.So there can be more people cycling, even in a cycle-friendly country?Klaus Bondam: Yeah, yeah. But I mean, for example, in Denmark 30% of all car rides are 5 kilometres or less. So there’s still enormous potential to use. And do you have a last message for the team and also the ISCA team and the followers as well when they leave today?Klaus Bondam: I think the message is look after yourselves and look after your co-cyclists and please do spread the good and happy message of cycling because for me, honestly, it is really hard to find anything bad about cycling. The good thing about cycling is also that it’s basically for everybody. It’s for young people, old people, small people, tall people, big people, skinny people. For myself, I’m not a good runner because it makes my knees hurt. But when I’m on the bicycle, whoa – I can do it! Interview by Rachel Payne, photo by Maria Lourdes Gonzalez  
    Interview with the World Cycling Alliance steering board member Klaus Bondam: Active transport has enormous potential
  • "They say when I'm on a bike I'm like the Bionic Woman!": How being active gave Aysel Atas the super-power to battle on
    For Aysel Atas, the Journey of Hope represents a lifelong journey that has seen her move from Turkey to the Netherlands as a child, be married by the time she was 16 and battle breast cancer at the age of 36.Aysel believes that being active and moving forward has been a common thread in overcoming what life has thrown her way. During her cancer treatment, she was determined to finish her studies and graduate with a Master's Degree in Management Economy and Law with the rest of her classmates. She succeeded, but finding a job at the end of the road wasn’t easy, so at the age of 43 she moved back to Turkey and started again. Now she is working with what she loves: being active and using her cycling skills to help people who are going through similar battles, such as autistic children, vision impaired people and other women with breast cancer. ISCA spoke to Aysel during the Journey of Hope team’s tour through Denmark.How do you feel the Journey of Hope has been going the first few days?Aysel: I’ve enjoyed it until now. Everything has gone very well and we have a great team. I like cycling and when I’m on the bike I can forget everything. Just looking around and breathing in the air. It’s great. What motivated you to join the Journey of Hope team?Aysel: I always wanted to go on a long tour, especially in Europe. This was a good reason to start with a couple of people before I go on my own. It felt right. And I guess in this situation hope means something more personal to you. Could you tell us a little bit about that?Aysel: Yes, because what we’re doing, “BeActive”, is what helped me go on, because I have had a very difficult past – both psychologically and physically. I was married in my 16th year and a mother in my 17th. I had a bad marriage and I could just forget what was happening to me just by being active – by doing sport, by swimming, everything. After my divorce, I got sick, I got cancer, and during my illness I went on. That kept me on my feet. You’ve mentioned that some people told you that you couldn’t keep doing what you were doing when you got sick.Aysel: Yes, when I had cancer and I was in the hospital having chemotherapy my mother also passed on from breast cancer. So again, psychologically and physically I was on the bottom. So then again, sport was the only way for me to come out of this situation and forget what had happened. Or just not think about it, because when you think about what happens to you, you lay down – it doesn’t help you. When I was ill, I studied. Everyone said when I lost my mother and was busy with my treatments to “sit down and rest”. And I said, “that’s not going to help me. When I’m ready after all this shit, I can graduate, get a job and I can go to work. I don’t have the time to lay down.” I felt that if I stood still, I would go down. So I did what I did, and my teachers from my education were surprised about me. They said, “Wow, we’ve never met anybody like you. With so many things going on you are still going and you’re doing well.” Because I never failed. I graduated with the other students and I held with them. And you finished a Master’s degree?Aysel: Yes, but after that I couldn’t get a job because of the crisis in Holland. So I’d had enough of being rejected every time I went for a job, because of my age mostly, or I was over-qualified or under-qualified for the job. So on my birthday I went – I took the plane and went to Izmir, where I knew nobody and had nothing there, and I began a new life. I thought I had to do something, because in several years I’d be too old to start again.
    "They say when I'm on a bike I'm like the Bionic Woman!": How being active gave Aysel Atas the super-power to battle on
  • ISCA interview with Nordea Foundation director Henrik Lehmann Andersen: "Why we are engaging in sports and cycling"
    Nordea Foundation Director Henrik Lehmann Andersen at the Journey of Hope opening event in Copenhagen. Photo: Nordea Foundation "Cycling is a perfect way to get more people moving. That's why the Nordea Foundation supports cycling playgrounds (cykellegebaner) and the 'On Bike with DGI' (På Cykel med DGI) project," the Danish Nordea Foundation wrote on Twitter on the opening day of the Journey of Hope event. Its Director, Henrik Lehmann Andersen, joined the celebration on 18 August and told ISCA why his foundation is getting behind this accessible mode of transport, why a cycling-friendly nation like Denmark can still learn from other countries, and what attracts him to an initiative. ISCA: What do you think are the messages that come out of an event like this, a Journey of Hope of long distance cycling by recreational cyclists? HLA: The message is that it’s for everybody. It’s not for specialists or extremely fit, Olympic Games-looking people, it’s for everybody. So that’s the main perspective and that’s why we are engaging ourselves, as a Danish foundation, in sports and in cycling. It’s not for the elite; it’s for everybody. So to get everybody to do it, to get everybody committed and to get everybody to learn how to do it, that’s the really important thing for us. ISCA: Do you think that’s also an important thing for active transport and promoting that around Europe as well?HLA: Of course there is a perspective in this thing on cycling across borders to connect people and to get people to know each other across borders and across cultures. That’s a really important thing too. But that’s not the issue of the foundation I work for.ISCA: Denmark in that sense has a lot to contribute in inspiring other countries. What do you think Denmark can get back from the other countries as inspiration in this kind of area? HLA: I think there is a lot of inspiration to catch up on from other countries, in fact every country. Sometimes you think you’re the centre of everything and that everybody else should learn from you, but there are always a lot of things you can learn from others. In this field, there’s a lot to learn from having a broader perspective on cycling – on how a lot of different communities work, on the initiatives they take and how they get people to participate. That’s one of the challenges we have in Denmark, because there are so many things you can do, so many things where you can be active, so how do you get them to see you? To see you in their daily life and get engaged in this cycling.ISCA: So what do you think are the key elements of a really good initiative that you’ve seen or supported that really gets people active?HLA The main thing is people’s engagement. That if you experience other people being engaged, lively and full of energy, then you get inspired. And then you commit to what they are doing. And you find your role to play with your commitment in some way, no matter whether it’s cycling or social issues, or whatever it is.ISCA: And have you got any final thoughts or messages for the team as they depart on their great journey? HLA: Just keep up the good spirit and use each other’s strong points, which can be both physical and mental. Find out more about the Nordea Foundation The Journey of Hope is co-funded by the European Commission’s Erasmus+ Sport programme and promotes the #BeActive message. Interview by Rachel Payne, ISCA
    ISCA interview with Nordea Foundation director Henrik Lehmann Andersen: "Why we are engaging in sports and cycling"
  • Follow the #JourneyOfHope cycling tour on Flickr
    Relive the start to the colourful #BeActive Journey of Hope cross-border cycling tour – or catch up on what you missed – with our photo gallery from the first four days of the tour in Denmark.From the opening event and departure in Copenhagen on 18 August to the CYKLO cycling festival in Aarhus, the Journey of Hope team has met cycling enthusiasts from east to west of Denmark. A group of cyclists rode from Roskilde to Copenhagen to join them on the first leg of the tour. In Aarhus, they took part in the colourful CYKLO Slow Ride around the city on 20 August and joined the cycling marathon to Vejle for the next leg of the tour on 21 August. Now they are heading south to the Danish-German border on the way to their next Journey of Hope event in Berlin. Waiting for them there is a group of determined women who are using cycling as a way to integrate refugees in one of Europe’s biggest cities. Stay tuned and follow the tour on Flickr, the NowWeMOVE blog, Twitter and Facebook The Journey of Hope is co-funded by the European Commission’s Erasmus+ Sport programme and promotes the #BeActive message.
    Follow the #JourneyOfHope cycling tour on Flickr
  • Danish active transport ambassadors give Journey of Hope a grand send-off
    The #BeActive #JourneyofHope team cycled out of Copenhagen yesterday with over 50 recreational cyclists following them in a nod to Forrest Gump’s famous long-distance run. The official start of the European Week of Sport event, which is carrying messages about active transport, physical activity and peaceful mobility around Europe, marked the beginning of a 31-day, 2530km ride from Copenhagen to Vienna.ISCA member DGI and partner the Danish Cyclists’ Federation ensured that the local cycling community grasped the opportunity to take part in the event and ride with the team to Roskilde, 40km west of Copenhagen. Some followers doubled their journey, riding all the way from Roskilde to Copenhagen, arriving in time to ride back again with the team. DGI tempted passers-by to come and test their speed on its bike simulator and ISCA staff and the Danish child safety awareness foundation “Børneulykkesfonden” entertained the children on Israels Plads with spontaneous dances in the spirit of the #BeActive FlashMOVE, colouring in and biking activities. Børneulykkesfonden ambassador and the City of Copenhagen’s Mayor for Children and Youth Pia Allerslev knows what it takes to complete a long cycling trip – she rode from Copenhagen to Paris twice in support of a cause she believes in. “I think it’s very important to tell people that if you set a goal then you can do it and if you have the energy and the craziness to do things then it’s perfect. And sending the signal that you can bike that many kilometres in 30 days, that’s a wonderful story to tell,” she says. “As the Mayor for Children and Youth in the City of Copenhagen I think it’s important to tell the kids, and also the parents, that when you live in cities it’s very easy to go by bike instead of walking or taking the bus or car.” The Director of the Nordea Foundation, Henrik Lehmann Andersen, was also at Israels Plads to greet the team and is no stranger to long bike rides either, having cycled around Tasmania in Australia for instance. He says events like the Journey of Hope are a great way of showing that anyone can do the same thing if they have a bike, a good spirit and are ready for an adventure. “[Cycling] is not just for specialists or extremely fit Olympic Games-looking people, it’s for everybody. That’s the main perspective and that’s why we are engaging ourselves, as a Danish foundation, in sports and in cycling. It’s not for the elite; it’s for everybody. So to get everybody to do it, to get everybody committed and to get everybody to learn how to do it, that’s the really important thing for us,” he says. The Journey of Hope opening event took place right on the Danish Cyclists’ Federation’s doorstep, and its Director, Klaus Bondam, who is a member of the new World Cycling Alliance created by ISCA partner the European Cyclists’ Federation, praised events like the Journey of Hope that draw attention to active transport as a solution to sedentary lifestyle. “I think every event that moves around promoting active mobility, is very, very important because it is one of the challenges in our society is facing these years: How do we, as human beings, become more active at a time where more and more of us are sitting down at computers? That activity can be recreational cycling, going on longer trips as we see here,” he says. The Danish Cyclists’ Federation’s Bike to Work campaign has seen continued success in a country that already has a strong cycling culture, but where people still use the car for 30% of trips spanning over 5km or less. So he still believes there is “enormous” potential to promote cycling to people anywhere in the world. “We see that cycling can contribute to 11 out of the 17 United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals. For example creating resilient cities and helping to reduce poverty by creating affordable modes of transportation.” Not to mention to the average citizen in Denmark, where physical activity crazes like running are not always for everyone. “The good thing about cycling is that it’s basically for everybody,” he points out. “I’m not a good runner because it makes my knees hurt. But when I’m on the bicycle, I think ‘Whoa – I can do it!’” By Rachel Payne, ISCA The Journey of Hope is co-funded by the European Commission’s Erasmus+ Sport programme and promotes the #BeActive message.
    Danish active transport ambassadors give Journey of Hope a grand send-off
Interview with the World Cycling Alliance steering board member Klaus Bondam: Active transport has enormous potential
Klaus Bondam is a cycling advocate who is making his mark on the active transport sector both in his home country, Denmark, and internationally. He is the Director of the Danish Cyclists' Federation and has now been appointed to the steering board of the World Cycling Alliance - an initiative of ISCA and NowWeMOVE partner the European Cyclists' Federation. With the start of the Journey of Hope cross-border cycling tour unfolding on the Danish Cyclists' Federation's doorstep, we took the opportunity to ask Klaus why he believes cycling is such an important mode of transport, how he believes Danes can improve their cycling etiquette and what the World Cycling Alliance's ambitions are going forward. Why do you see an event like the Journey of Hope as being important and what are the messages you see coming out of it?Klaus Bondam: I think every event that moves around, active mobility, is very, very important because it is one of the challenges in our society is facing these years: How do we, as human beings, become more active in a time where more and more of us are sitting down at computers. That activity can be recreational cycling, going on longer trips as we see here. We are very strong at here in Copenhagen and Denmark, where you have a lot of everyday cyclists, people who go to work every day by bicycle, kids who go to school on the bicycle, parents who cycle together in the city. So I do hope that events like this create both national knowledge that we are actually quite good at this in Denmark, and we do have an expertise that other countries can benefit from, and hopefully other events where other countries get inspire by what we’re doing in Denmark. Now of course, this is also an EU-funded project, so we, the Danish Cyclists’ Federation and also the European Cyclists’ Federation – where we are founding members and also in the World Cycling Alliance, where I’m on the steering group – we are very happy that politically it seems that there is a rising understanding of the contributions that cycling can make. You talk about how Denmark can inspire other nations, but what could Denmark learn from other nations like this when they come on this sort of international tour? Are there things that Denmark can still learn?Klaus Bondam: Yes, of course, because we do in Denmark have some issues with behaviour on the bicycle path – people not paying enough attention to each other – and I think that is one thing we can learn from the rest of the world, and basically being a bit more observant of other people and saying “excuse me” and “please” a little more. That’s something we’re not very good at in Denmark. You mentioned the World Cycling Alliance, what are the ambitions for the alliance and what sort of work have you already been doing?Klaus Bondam: Like the European Cyclists’ Federation it’s a political organisation, so it’s about lobbying policy makers and decision takers to implement cycling as a part of our daily life. And especially at a time when we see, at least in Europe, the number of cars going up and up and up, we do face some big challenges with CO2 emissions, public health and all these kinds of things. But I think probably the most interesting work of the World Cycling Alliance is basically linking the benefits you can have from cycling to the fulfilment of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, because we actually do see that cycling can contribute to 11 out of the 17 SDGs. For example creating resilient cities, helping to reduce poverty by creating affordable modes of transportation, such as peasants going from the countryside into the city selling their things, delivering services, and all these kinds of things.And the Danish Cyclists' Federation has also run its own campaign in May, the Bike to Work campaign. How did that go? How was the response?Klaus Bondam: We’ve done that for years in Denmark, since 1997, I think. So it’s an old lady. It’s going well. I’d say it’s a very integrated part of office life in Denmark. A lot of offices participate in that campaign. The good thing about it is that it does create new cyclists every year. We know that from service people, who are not used to cycling who actually start cycling.So there can be more people cycling, even in a cycle-friendly country?Klaus Bondam: Yeah, yeah. But I mean, for example, in Denmark 30% of all car rides are 5 kilometres or less. So there’s still enormous potential to use. And do you have a last message for the team and also the ISCA team and the followers as well when they leave today?Klaus Bondam: I think the message is look after yourselves and look after your co-cyclists and please do spread the good and happy message of cycling because for me, honestly, it is really hard to find anything bad about cycling. The good thing about cycling is also that it’s basically for everybody. It’s for young people, old people, small people, tall people, big people, skinny people. For myself, I’m not a good runner because it makes my knees hurt. But when I’m on the bicycle, whoa – I can do it! Interview by Rachel Payne, photo by Maria Lourdes Gonzalez  

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The 5th edition of NowWeMOVE’s signature event MOVE Week took place in the spring in Europe for the first time this year (23-29 May 2016). MOVE Week in Latin America will be in November (19-27 November in Brazil, Semana Move Brasil).

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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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In 2015, ISCA commissioned a study called the 'Economic Cost of Physical Inactivity in Europe', showing that half a million Europeans die every year as a result of being physically inactive. The most common causes of death are from those diseases linked to being physically inactive, such as coronary heart disease, type II diabetes and colorectal and breast cancer. One in four adults across Europe is currently physically inactive – as are four out of five adolescents.

 

Download the full report and infographics at the official microsite http://inactivity-time-bomb.nowwemove.com/

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

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