ALBANIA/SERBIA – Within the second RYCO Open Call for Project Proposals co-financed by the United Nations Peacebuilding Fund, the Omladinski Košarkaški Klub “Play 017” from Serbia in partnership with the Pro-Basket Invaders Association from Albania, the High School “Sezai Suroi” and the High School “Sveti Sava” from Bujanovac, Serbia, implemented the project “Let’s Play Together”.
The project took place from December 2019 to November 2020 and contributed to regional youth cooperation and reconciliation by using sports to promote tolerance and unity. It provided young participants to strengthen their capacities and teamwork skills in order to keep promoting tolerance and social cohesion in their communities.
“Despite the coronavirus pandemic, the “Let’s Play Together” project where I participated and where I was the captain of the Play 017 team, helped us make new friendships, learn useful things about sports, but it also helped us learn more about human rights and the importance of young people’s cooperation, who want to create a future where all of us will be equal and respected, no matter of our religion, skin color or nationality,” project representative Mr Strahinja Zdravković highlighted.
While enabling youth to play, enjoy sports and have fun along the way, the project promoted the culture of togetherness by helping young people comprehend the possibility and fruits of working together, collaborating and creating new friendships.
“In each implemented activity we tried to leave the mark of great sacrifice, energy and togetherness. Through the activities realized within the project, in addition to the promotion of sports, the project pointed out the importance of cooperation, as well as the need to engage young people to respect differences,” Doctor of Science at the Faculty of Sports and Physical Education in Serbia Mr Dušan Nikolić emphasized.
The partnerships created among organizers, participants and the students’ sports clubs involved in the project establishing a new culture of mobility and provided youth with spaces to seize new opportunities for regional cooperation.