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The contribution of sports to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals

February 2019
The contribution of sports to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals

The United Nations has a long history of using sports as a tool to promote development and peace. Through numerous resolutions in the General Assembly, the United Nations has recognised sports as a key contributor to promoting tolerance, respect and the empowerment of women, individuals and communities.
Because of its universal appeal, sports time and time again prove to be a powerful framework for partnerships, advocacy and public awareness building. The United Nations and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Fund have therefore created a special toolkit which aims to identify and showcase the important role sports play in mobilising support and creating public awareness of the SDGs. The toolkit is aimed at relevant stakeholders including United Nations entities, Member States, sports-related organisations and agencies, associations, foundations, civil society and the private sector.

The toolkit presents a number of case studies that illustrate how sports can help achieve SDGs such as ending poverty; ending hunger and achieving food security and improved nutrition; make cities and human settlements more safe, resilient and sustainable; and achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.

The toolkit also looks at the private sector as active partners in driving positive change and highlights the innovations and creativeness of global companies like Coca-Cola to reach the far corners of the world. It is argued that this kind of resilient approach can help form the most dynamic and transformational solutions to addressing the SDGs.

Having looked at a number of case studies and examples of sports as a tool to achieve the SDGs, the toolkit concludes with a number of recommendations for stakeholders, including:

  • Sports programmes should develop strategies that address multiple SDGs using the same resources.
  • Cross-sector partnerships should be pursued to encourage the formation of alliances between sectors to address development gaps that governments are unable to address.
  • Knowledge and expertise exchange and sharing between development sectors and sports stakeholders must be encouraged.
  • There should be more funding for inclusive sports and development programmes. The private sector has a big role to play in this part.
  • Governments should create policies that increasingly favour and encourage collaborations and partnerships in order to incentivise and fast-track the attainment of sustainable development through sports.

 


Paul Poole (South East Asia) Co., Ltd. is an independent marketing consultancy based in Bangkok, Thailand specialising in commercial sponsorship and partnership marketing, working with both rights holders and brands - acting as a catalyst by bringing them together and maximising the relationship.

We have packaged, sold and managed sponsorship and partnership opportunities for a wide range of rights holders and worked with many of the world’s leading brands to source and engage the right sponsorships and partnerships for them to maximise.

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