The Erasmus+ programme has chosen the Sports Club for Health (SCforH) project as one of its Success Stories. Many Erasmus+ projects receive Good Practice recognition, but only 10% are recognized as Success Stories. The European Commission makes the selection.
“We were really surprised to get such valuable recognition for our work. Thanks are due to all our partners,” says SCforH project manager Ulla Nykänen of the Finnish Olympic Committee.
The Sports Club for Health approach has been implemented in a variety of ways and countries. In the Finnish model, the principles of Sports Club for Health are applied to the promotion of health-enhancing physical activity in sports clubs.
“The Sports Club for Health principles are involved and internalized in national sports club quality programme, Star Club. So our 500 Star Clubs work on promoting our approach every day,” Nykänen says.
Sports Club for Health and the Finnish model, as an example of it, have aroused interest internationally.
“The model has been presented to the International Olympic Committee and, at an ENGSO event, to European umbrella sport organizations, sports federations and national Olympic committees. Sports clubs that follow our approach become strong promoters of an active lifestyle,” Nykänen says.
The Sports Club for Health approach aims to give sports clubs new and practical ways of getting members of all ages involved in health-enhancing physical activity. As part of the project sporting disciplines also identify their specific health effects. The project was run in seven countries and with 19 partners between 2015 and 2017.
“This project involved a wide range of players, and of course we did face challenges along the way. For example, the differences in physical activity culture between countries affected how the project progressed, but when we learnt from each other, we got things done,” says SCforH project coordinator Timo Hämäläinen of the Finnish Regional Sports Federation.
“We’ve got off to a good start in spreading the principles of Sports Club for Health, and we’re going to keep this up in future projects,” Hämäläinen says.
The Sports Club for Health website has a lot of information and tools to help decision makers, sports and regional federations, and sports clubs promote health-enhancing physical activity. Read more at https://www.scforh.info/