Celebrating the incredible power of sport for building better societies
When was the last time you felt passionate about your work? I get a boost every day!
I work in the sport unit in the European Commission with projects that highlight the incredible power of sport.
Sport is fun but, in fact, it is much more than that. It brings people together. Sport is also based on fairness and respect – regardless of who you are and where you come from. On the pitch it does not matter who you are or where you come from! This makes sport a powerful tool for breaking barriers and building a more inclusive society. And we want to celebrate this at the European Commission.
Through the sport actions of the Erasmus+ programme we get people to #beactive and fund projects supporting women and girls in sport. We also support projects using sport as a tool for the integration of minorities, refugees and people with physical and mental disabilities, including a grant for the 2017 Special Olympics world winter games. At the European Commission we also support volunteers in sport including through the European Voluntary Service and the European Solidarity Corps. In my free time I am a Caritas volunteer supporting 2 refugee kids with their schooling. Being a volunteer myself I am thrilled to see the commitment and engagement of so many people.
We have launched the #BeInclusive EU sport awards competition and we received 297 submissions! 297 submissions of pure passion and commitment from both grassroots and international organisations that walk the talk in creating an inclusive society. Organisations that go the extra mile to reach out to the most vulnerable, many of them supported by volunteers!
I feel privileged I am part of all this. The sport unit of the European Commission is a great place to be!
Maria Luisa Fernandez Esteban
Deputy Head of the Sport Unit, European Commission & Volunteer #WithRefugees