MOVE Beyond multiplier event in Sweden: “Inspiration, inclusion & cross-border collaboration in association life”

Posted October 23, 2020

By Save the Children Sweden Region West

At the MOVE Beyond multiplier event in Sweden on Friday, 16 October, RF-SISU Västra Götaland and Save the Children Region West presented the collaboration between their two organisations. They also presented the background, goals and framework for the Swedish model of their MOVE Beyond pilot with the approach of working ‘with’ and not ‘for’ the refugees (as well as asylum seekers and newcomers), and the method of providing information, tools and resources directly to the target group.

The event was held both in-person in Vänersborg and online in a hybrid format, where presentations and group work were conducted at the venue and online. It began with Benny Augustsson, the Mayor of Vänersborg Municipality and the Chairman of the Municipal Board, welcoming everyone to Vänersborg and to the Support Group Intercultural Centre.

Johan Gadd, Director of Sports District, RF-SISU Västra Götaland followed with a welcoming speech. Then Sara Lidgren-Ntini, Regional Manager for Save the Children Region West, which encompasses three Swedish regions, talked about Save the Children’s integration projects and collaboration with sport organisations in different projects nationally and regionally.

To wrap up the first part of the session, Lillemor Lindell, National Coordinator for Inclusion, Equality and Integration at RF-SISU spoke online from the Swedish Sports Confederation’s perspective about the benefits of collaboration across organisational boundaries and how international collaborations are important to identify tools for increased inclusion of asylum seekers and newcomers in sports.

Then the refugees, who were trained as leaders through the project and acquired the title of Intercultural Coordinators of Physical Activity (ICPAs), Ali Alizada, Rohullah Safdari, Sara Khaled, Silvee Alnwkeel, Navid Amiri, Safar Rasoli, Maqsood Rehman and Waleed Ilya, presented the training they had received, the structure of their pilots and the various activities they organised, planned and budgeted on their own with support from RF-SISU Västra Götaland and Save the Children in the EU project MOVE Beyond.

A film about the four Swedish pilots was presented, then the audience had chance to get a glimpse into the pilot of the Italian partners in the project (ATAS and UISP).

Save the Children and RF-SISU presented the MOVE Beyond policymaking papers and project recommendations. Afterwards, the audience watched a video message from Saska Benedicic Tomat, ISCA Head of Projects and MOVE Beyond coordinator, who gave a general overview of integration policies in sports around Europe and advice for policy makers and recommendations on how we can better work together to include refugees in our communities and how to best use sport as an integration tool.

Towards the end of the event, the audience was invited to a group discussion both in-person and online for the participants who joined in via Zoom. The group discussions were very much appreciated and the results of these talks will contribute to the final report of the project.

One comment from these group discussions was the following: “We should not sit in our own rooms and find solutions/processes/activities/training alone, but have a dialogue and good conversations as early as possible with those concerned. They often know what they want or need for their integration or inclusion to work better.”

A total of 70 participants in the Swedish multiplier event participated during the day physically and online.