KOLAŠIN – RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro organized a Youth Camp on “Intercultural Competencies in Sports” in Kolašin, from 8 to 10 May 2023, in cooperation with the Ministry of Sports and Youth and the OSCE Mission to Montenegro.
Fourteen young athletes from various sports associations in Montenegro gathered with the goal of enhancing their intercultural competencies and promoting cooperation among youths in sports. Interactive workshops and lectures were designed and led by experienced trainers and experts in youth work- Ms Elvira Hadžibegović-Bubanja and Mr Admir Hadžibegović, who provided the young athletes with the knowledge and understanding needed to bridge cultural differences and work together effectively towards their common sporting goals.
The opening remarks were delivered by the Head of RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro- Mr Edin Koljenović, Deputy Head of the OSCE Mission to Montenegro- Ms Siv-Katrine Leirtroe, and the Director of the Directorate for Sports- Mr Zoran Jojić.
Mr Koljenović welcomed participants and highlighted that he is particularly pleased that this Camp is the fifth youth sports camp on the topic of “Intercultural Competences in Sports”, that RYCO Local Branch Office in Montenegro traditionally organizes in collaboration with the OSCE Mission to Montenegro and the Ministry of Sports and Youth.
“Our young athletes represent role models to their peers, inspiring them to cultivate team spirit, friendship, leadership, acceptance of diversity, and cooperation among young people through their work, achievements, and medals. During the training, participants will have the opportunity to learn more about intercultural competencies in sports, breaking down prejudices, understanding identity, equality, and doing this through the prism of their professions,” Mr Koljenović stated.
“I am pleased to welcome you today on behalf of the OSCE Mission to Montenegro.
Sport is a place where people of different cultures and backgrounds come together and fight stereotypes and discrimination in spite of holding different views. Let us turn to the positive influence of sport and look at the ways we can include vulnerable and disadvantaged groups, and contribute to intercultural exchange and conflict resolution,” Ms Leirtroe emphasized.
The Director of the Directorate for Sports in Montenegro, Mr. Jojić, expressed his appreciation for the successful collaboration between the Directorate, RYCO, OSCE, and sports associations, which aims to help young people reach their full potential while fighting against xenophobia, discrimination, stereotypes, and prejudices.
“I encourage young athletes to develop their values and competencies beyond sports to become well-rounded individuals”, stated Mr Jojić.
On the last day of the camp, Mr Edin Koljenović used the opportunity to present RYCO work and its activities to participants, motivating young athletes to participate in various local and regional programs, and encouraging them to connect with their peers from all around the Western Balkans.