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The UNOSDP uses sports to target three areas for child development. These priority targets are protecting children while playing sports, strengthening a child’s education, and translating skills from the pitch into life off it.
Although it is every child’s right to play, it is also every youth’s right to receive protection and respect on the field. The UNOSDP makes sure that children are protected from “physical, sexual, psychological and neglect” while playing, as these issues can have a serious detriment to a youth’s health and development.
Sports are a vital part of a Child’s education. Schools cannot neglect or cutback on physical education. Research has shown that sports play a pivotal role in a child’s school life, and results have shown that students who play sports have increased “school enrollment, retention and access to education and fostering academic achievement”.
On the field, players pick up attributes such as “leadership, perseverance, social and moral character, self-esteem, commitment to teamwork, problem-solving, and organizational ability”. These skills, which apply in everyday life, allow children to develop into valuable employees and citizens. Furthermore, sports can also help create work opportunities for youth.
(Information courtesy of the United Nations Sport And Child & Youth Development Working Group)