23 Mar STORIES THAT HAVE INSPIRED US – Hello future sportgirl!
Center for the Affirmation of Women in Sport is an association of citizens established two years ago in Novi Sad. This is the first association dealing exclusively with gender equality and sports, with a mission to promote and encourage the participation of women in sport, in all sports disciplines, forms, age groups, roles and all positions in the sport system in Serbia.
It gathers activists, athletes, experts, media workers and all the other people who are willing to engage in the realization of the idea of equal access to sport for all citizens. The Association participates in the activities of the Women’s Platform for the development of Serbia until 2020, regarding the health and sports.
The project on which the members of the association are especially proud of is the online campaign “Hello, future athlete” that was developed with the organization “Raspustilište” from Novi Sad at the end of 2016 as a part of the Local Action Plan for Youth of Novi Sad. This campaigns goal is to develop women’s sports role models with the aim to motivate boys and girls (from Novi Sad) to be more involved in sports. Practice and research shows that girls are less involved in sports and physical exercise than boys and young men. Also, it is necessary to motivate those who are now seniors to stay in the sport after the completion of their competitive career. On the other hand, it is necessary to create female athlete role models, for other athletes and women in sports because female athletes are not sufficiently represented in the media.
Olympic athlete Ivana Španović; table tennis player and Paralympics gold medalist Borislava Perić Ranković; Former Olympian shooter, now Assistant Provincial Secretary for Sports and Youth Aranka Binder; former WNBA basketball player and now vice president of the Novi Sad women’s basketball academy Slobodanka Tuvić Maksimović and International Basketball Judge Jasmina Juras took part in the first phase of the project. Through short videos, each of them said how they started playing sports, what sport means to them and their message to girls and young women why to engage in sports. Earlier this year, the campaign was joined by basketball player, Olympic and European champion Sara Krnjić and Jelena Erić Rakonjac, former handball player, world vice-champion and director of women’s representation. During winter break, they took part in “Raspustilište” talking with children aged from 4-14 years about the importance of sport.
The campaign is social network-based, and the intention is to quickly go to the next block of videos that include young athletes (cadets, juniors), organize debates and interviews on women sport and related topics, implement new actions and steps in order to improve the position of women in sport.
The campaign was supported by women’s water polo team of Vojvodina and Women’s Basketball Academy of Novi Sad. They were photographed with a campaign banner. Other clubs that supported this initiative are: Karate club “Mladost” from Šabac, bowling club “Singidunum” from Belgrade and their junior vice-champion of the world member, Kiristina Ljubenković and “Radnički” from Novi Sad, female basketball club “Srem” and the women’s volleyball club “Eaton Srem – Tempo” from Sremska Mitrovica. This way the campaign is spreading outside Novi Sad. The Center hopes that they will get the support from other (female) teams and clubs in the future, as well to establish cooperation with them for creating new campaigns.
What female athletes and women in sport said and how the campaign unfolds, you can see on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as their key social network for campaign.
This story is a part of the aspirations of the TACSO Serbia and TACSO by Civic Initiatives to promote good practices of civil society organizations in Serbia and motivate other organizations that invest on daily basis their energy and efforts in creating a better society for all citizens of Serbia.