Power of sports to shape the future of adolescents

We believe in the power of sports to transform lives and communities.

UNICEF ROSA
girls with football
UNICEF ROSA/2017/Nybo
21 March 2018

We are the strength of South Asia.

  • We are part of a team made up of 340 million adolescents in this region. We make up 30 percent of all the adolescents in the world.
  • We are dreamers and changemakers.
  • We are a force for good today and the leaders of tomorrow.

We are united through sport.

  • The values that define sports – teamwork, fairness, discipline, respect for the opponent and the rules of the game – are understood all over the world. These values are not limited by language, culture or country.
  • We are united by our love for the game.

We believe in the power of sports to transform lives and communities.

  • Sports for Fun: Through play adolescents explore, invent and create. They also develop social skills, learn to express their emotions, and gain confidence about their own capabilities. Adolescents throughout the world are naturally drawn to sport and play, and they can engage all children, even the poorest and most marginalized, to have fun and enjoy their childhood!
  • Sports for girls: Sport increases self-esteem among adolescent girls and provides opportunities for the advancement of girls in the face of gender-related barriers. It is absolutely critical to involve girls in sports.
  • Sports for health: Sport encourages and improves physical fitness and reduces childhood obesity. Childhood obesity is one of the most serious public health challenges of the 21st century. According to the World Health Organization, physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality. Evidence shows that regular participation in appropriate physical activity and sport provides all people, regardless of ability, with a wide range of physical, social and mental health benefits.
  • Sports for skills: Sport is a good entry-point to promote life skills-based education and healthy lifestyles, including the values of physical fitness, proper nutrition and how to make choices that positively impact health. There is evidence that sport and play enhance child development and learning and encourage better academic performance. Sport also offers opportunities for the development of peer leaders.
  • Sports for peace: Sport can build community, aid conflict resolution and foster mutual understanding and peer support among groups in past or present conflict. Sport can be used to promote a safe and protective environment for children and to teach young people how to solve conflict in a non-violent manner.
UNICEF ROSA/2017