New Nordplus-supported project to enhance collaboration on refugee integration in Nordic/Baltic countries



The 2015 refugee influx to Europe, including the Nordic countries, has waned, but challenges persist: Political discontent with refugees and immigrants is widespread, and integration efforts fall short. On top of that, refugees are disproportionally hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Nordic countries have experienced rather limited collaboration when it comes to the integration of refugees, and some are even at odds in their approaches. That’s why ISCA has developed a new Nordplus project on Integration of Refugees Through Sport (IRTS), which will take a different approach to the topic by aiming to strengthen Nordic cooperation in the field of adult learning to enhance integration of refugees at the level of civil society organisations.

The sport and physical activity organisations, as the biggest civil society sector in the Nordic countries, can play an important role in providing learning opportunities and taking a holistic approach to the successful integration of refugees.

The Nordic countries are characterised by sizeable and vibrant civil societies that give citizens a strong voice and learning and engagement opportunities in their communities. Civil society solutions can be greatly enhanced by collaboration both within the individual country and across neighbouring countries. This project builds on positive experiences in each country by scaling up best practices both in partner countries and across the Nordic/Baltic region.

Project partners ISCA from Denmark, MONALIIKU from Finland and Viken Idrettskrets (VIK) / Viken Sport Region from Norway represent different approaches to integration of refugees through sport. We are working to build on our existing network to enhance the value of the project to include organisations from the Baltic and other Nordic countries and regions as well.

During the 1-year project period, we plan to reach out to other organisations through a range of IRTS activities, including the collection of 20 good practices, the development and delivery of a 5-module online learning course for 30 other organisations, establishing an international network supported by a digital platform, mentoring sessions and webinars, and a broad dissemination of project results. 

The project is supported by

Pictured above: Birkerød Tennis Club in Denmark and Nordic partners from ISCA's KA2 Erasmus+ and Nordplus Adult projects in 2018