How does it work?
This project will take place during 12 months, from January 1st to December 31st, 2018.
In general terms, this project intends to start by collecting relevant information about boccia as a good practice, continuing by training trainers of volunteers, so they can actually train volunteers, who will be in charge of doing facilitating raising-awareness activities. All the contributions will be gathered for the preparation of two dissemination tools: a manual of good practices called “Inclusive & Adapted Sport – Boccia for all” and a website/platform. The dissemination and exploitation of results will not only take place in Portugal, as well in all and every single one of the partners’ countries. In the partners’ countries, it will be composed of 2 moments: 1. Training for Trainers of volunteers, in the sense that the previous trainees are now trainers, which enhances the multiplying effect; and a conference for presentation of results and the dissemination tools. The project is being regularly monitored and evaluated in a midterm and final evaluation sessions with all the partners and relevant stakeholders and the report writing will be shared.
How Boccia is connected to Portugal?
Portugal has relevant experience in adapted sports such as basketball, handball, swimming, sailing, goalball, canoe (more recently), archery and boccia. The same applies to the experience of Portuguese athletes in the Paralympics in general, and in the case of boccia in particular.
Having become official sport of the Paralympic Games in 1984, boccia gave pride to Portugal through many medals until 2008. In the 1970s, boccia was brought to Portugal, that was pioneer in the development of the sport. This caused a very positive impact in what the increasing social participation and inclusion of people with disabilities are concerned.
After 2008, the podiums of boccia at the international level began to be dominated by the Asians, who were stronger, not only in terms of material and financial resources (from high state aid), as human resources (there were many young people who practiced it).
However, Portugal is still recognised as an European reference. In November 2017, Portugal has won three medals (gold and bronze medals) in Boccia’s Europeans. Nelson Fernandes won the gold medal in the individual competition BC-2, with Abílio Valente reaching the bronze medal.
The national entourage had already achieved a first place in the BC-4 peer competition. The championship was held in Póvoa de Varzim and had the participation of eleven Portuguese athletes with motor deficiency, cerebral palsy or neuromuscular diseases. It is known that boccia is already included as one of the sports modality in some schools in Portugal.
It is our goal to use boccia as the means of awareness and development of the individual’s personal, social and professional levels as whole human beings, and at the same time to raise awareness next to the youngsters about the human rights of the people with disabilities and demystify prejudices and stereotypes about this citizens, that are still very deeply rooted.
As volunteers, the practitioners of boccia will go to schools in a regular and systematic way during the project and hopefully after the project finishes, being the good practice “messengers” next to youngsters, using non formal methodology and principles.
The project is going to take a place in Portugal for the most part, but we have partners from Italy, Greece, Slovenia too and some activities also going to take a place there.
With the support of the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, Boccia4all is one of the projects of EU which to support education, training, youth and sport in Europe. Erasmus+ provides opportunities to study, train, gain experience, and volunteer abroad.
One of the priorities of this Programme is opportunity to develop, transfer and implement innovative practices in different areas relating to sport and physical activity between various organisations and actors in and outside sport.
Small Collaborative Partnerships are innovative projects aiming to:
– combat doping at grassroots level, notably in recreational environments such as amateur sport and fitness;
– support prevention and raise awareness among stakeholders involved in the fight against match fixing;
– support prevention, educational and innovative approaches to tackle violence, racism and intolerance in sport;
– support the implementation of EU policy documents in the field of sport and other relevant policy areas such as recommendations, guidelines, policy strategies, etc. (e.g. EU Physical Activity Guidelines, EU Guidelines on Dual Careers of Athletes, Principles on good governance in sport, etc.)
A particular focus will be put on projects that address grassroots sports.
Project reference number: 590648-EPP-1-2017-1-PT-SPO-SSCP
Here you can find more information on the programme here.