10-13 October 2017: Sofia Interregional Event

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10-13 October 2017: Sofia Interregional Event

Sofia (Bulgaria) – The last Interregional Event of INSPORT+ took place in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia from 11 to 13 Oct 2017, where NGO My World hosted partner organisations from 6 European countries (France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Spain), alongside local partners, in the following activities:

  1. SofiaInternational Conference – sharing and exchange of knowledge and experience among participants – local and international
  2. Integrated sporting and physical activities:
  • Zumba – recently getting more and more popular across the country;
  • Paneurhithmia – Bulgarian practice of relaxation and mental health;
  • Hippotherapy – also very popular across the country;
  • Dodgeball & Team games – used in every town;
  • Football;
  • Golf – presenting the Bulgarian experience, since recently the number of golf fields increased significantly, also Bulgariahosts many international tournaments;
  • Canoe-kayaking – even in capital, such facilities and opportunities are available and practiced. Same for country;
  • Health walking with sightseeing – an activity used in all counties;
  • National Dances – partners had opportunity to practice some Bulgarian national dances.

Almost every sport is suitable for people with disabilities, if adapted and led by professionals and trained people. Though small, Bulgaria is well-known for its sport, sportsmen and women, clubs, training centres, facilities, natural resources and climate. Sport for people with disabilities is very popular in the country as a powerful tool for social integration, although the situation varies between the capital and other regions in the country, particularly in terms of funding opportunities, access to quality facilities and trained staff. Usually in more remote regions, clubs work mainly on enthusiasm and personal/club resources, and for these any organised, bigger sport event is welcome, and they are very keen to participate, compete, share, get new skills and acquaintances, to be noticed. In the country for many years there is a sport tournament exists approved from the ministry programme for people with mental disabilities.

Thanks to this policy, NGOs and sport organisations during the last decade, along with local authorities, have more and more understood their role in society and started to support, finance and promote such sport activities for disabled people, as many new sport centres and facilities are established, and big centres usually have introduced special hours/sections for people with mental disabilities. Adapted Physical Activity as a specialty has been introduced in many big universities in the country, so Bulgaria is successfully preparing the necessary human resources for disabled sport, generally speaking.

Sports also varies from region to region, and usually in remote regions, due to limited sport facilities and centres, sports practised that do not require such special expensive structures, facilities, equipment or professionals, such as: bowling, tug-of-war, darts, boccia, healthy walking, dances, tennis and table tennis, wheelchair racing, football, chess, painting, etc., while in the capital many more sports are practised.

The Sofia event was very useful and interesting for all Bulgarian participants present. NGO My World supports and promotes all sport activities for people with various disabilities by organising sport events and tournaments, the dissemination of information and best practices, videos and other tutorials and is working on this policy area with local authorities, also promote to EU activities such as “Get Active” and the “EU Week of Sport”.

 

 

 

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