Social Political ChallengeThe Social Political Challenge
Many societies of the 21st century are confronted with a lot of social-political challenges, created by extensive changes, both in regard to important structural social changes and regarding values, needs and habits of individuals.
Many countries have to deal with big demographic changes such as the dynamically increasing number of elderly people in sharp contrast with the decreasing number of children. Another example of demographic change is the fast growing number of migrants. The process of globalisation and mechanisation has changed working and living conditions. Workspace and jobs have been shifted to other countries and continents. Unemployment and lower income has become a big economical and social problem.
Following the social-structural changes, needs, values and habits of individuals have changed as well. We can identify for instance a stronger tendency to individualistic behaviour, hedonism or self-realisation and a slowdown in social responsibility. Wrong nutritional habits and lack of physical exercises have created serious health problems in wide parts of our societies.
According to those social challenges national governments and international governmental and non-governmental organisations try to raise awareness, to create programmes and new strategies to solve those problems. The importance of NGO’s contributing to reduce such social challenges seems to be recognised more and more.
Sport organisations are already partly involved in offering assistance and fulfilling growing demands form politicians.
However, Sport for All organisations have hardly been taken seriously by politicians or social and welfare institutions in our societies. Barriers between the public sector and the civil society sector seem hard to overcome.
Partnership is the way forward
Development of partnership between civil society organisations and public institutions are one suggested tool in the effort of finding solutions for the major social-political challenges. Such partnerships demand recognition of the civil society organisations from the public sector. These partnerships also require reliable projects and activities delivered by the civil society sector.
Many areas could benefit form such partnerships. Public health, integration and intercultural dialogue are some of the social political areas where we already see partnerships emerging. However, sport organisations seem to have much more to contribute to such partnerships with social political goals.