Youth delegates say the impact of sport in children’s lives has been underestimated

posted by System Account
October 16, 2009


Addressing the Humanitarian, Social and Cultural Committee of the UN General Assembly on October 5, youth delegates from Norway, Turkey, Republic of Korea, Finland, Netherlands and Slovakia spoke about the power of sport and play to change lives.

Jordy Sweep, a delegate from the Netherlands, told the story of 10-year-old Themba, whose mother suffered from HIV and AIDS and whose older brother was a drug addict.  Themba did not go to school to improve his future, but so he could go to football practice afterwards.  Sweep stated that the importance of sports in young people's lives has been greatly underestimated.  When young people play a sport, they enjoy working together as a team and build self-confidence.  Sports and education greatly enhanced each other when combined into one program, allowing young people to gain knowledge and social and physical skills. 

Sweep called on Member States to invest in education and sports in an attempt to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

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