Interview with Lena Knorr from www.citiesforsports.eu
In your words, what are the unique features of your project?
In the project we, the partners from the cities of Athens, Copenhagen, Innsbruck, Rotterdam and Stuttgart, work together on a local municipal level. We are all people from practice and we have started an animated exchange of different approaches and activities in promoting children’s physical activity. This resulted in a collection of successful measures. Everyone interested can take a look at these best practice examples on our homepage: www.citiesforsports.eu. We have also developed guidelines for other municipalities as a practical handbook for the promotion of children’s physical activity.
What are the main achievements of your project?
Through the interchange all partners got a lot of input: they learned about different approaches, programmes and strategies in other cities. Reflecting the work process of the project also helped to optimise the networking dialogue within the several cities. It certainly revealed that it requires the close cooperation of different institutions and organisations within a city. We became aware that cross-sectoral and evidence-based work is the key factor for a successful and sustainable work. One of the main results of this project are the guidelines as a manual for physical activity promotion.
On the picture left to right:
Maarit Schneider-Penna, Sports Department Stuttgart, Andi Mündörfer, Sports Department Stuttgart, Jacob Kornbeck, European Commission, Sport Unit, Kathrin Fischer, Sports Department Stuttgart, Annemarie Wulffraat, Department for Sport and Leisure Rotterdam, Lena Knorr, Sports Department Stuttgart, Mads Kamp Hansen, Culture and Leisure Administration Copenhagen, Wolfgang Teix, Sports Department Innsbruck, Alieke Zijlstra, Department for Sport and Leisure Rotterdam, Mikkel Emborg, Culture and Leisure Administration Copenhagen, Maria Divani, Municipal Crèche and Childhood Centre Athens, Ioanna Panagiotopoulou, Municipal Crèche and Childhood Centre Athens
What are the main challenges that you have faced so far in the implementation?
Certainly one of the main challenges was to establish a good basis for the partner communication. This required learning about the different starting positions and putting oneself in the partner’s place. This is not always easy, because you first have to know in which ‘world’ you are. But all the partners are very happy that we’ve learned so much from one another.
What is your personal recommendation or vision for European health-enhancing physical activity?
The local governments throughout Europe are strengthening in their influence to promote physical activity for their citizens. The aim is to provide every citizen – from early on – with the same possibilities and opportunities to exercise, to do sports and to be physically active. The municipalities create the basis within their means. One focus should be on accessibility to sports for all no matter what your background may be. The main aim is to have fun doing sports.
How will you make your project sustainable for future?
We are already preparing for the time after the project. We want to continue the started work as we have realised that we’ll need more time to exchange between the partners. Beyond that there are a lot more themes we would like to talk about. We also want to get more cities and their experiences involved which could be realised in a network “Cities for Sports”. We only started. Join us on www.citiesforsports.eu.