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FUNDING


FUNDS FOR SPORT IN EUROPE


Tim Lamb, chief executive of the Sport and Recreation Alliance, talks European Union funding and how your organisation could benefit from its new dedicated stream for sport in 2014


or out of it. You might also think of ref- erendums, rebates, budgets, legislation and laws but would you associate any of these things directly with sport? European politics is in the public con-


W


sciousness at the moment and while its link to sport may have far less of a high profile in comparison with other


hen you think of the European Union what might first spring to mind is whether we’re better off in


issues, it plays an important supporting role. The European Commission – the executive body of the EU – recognises the autonomy of sports organisations and member states, so doesn’t inter- vene on issues like organising sports competitions. But many rules that do affect sport at a number of levels – such as media rights and online gambling – emanate directly from Brussels, as do issues like the internal market, employ- ment, health and education.


The EU has now committed itself to setting aside a long-term and dedicated funding system for sport which will be made available in 2014


Where the European Commission


can really come in handy is in ensuring that co-ordinated dialogue takes place between European countries – vital for sport which often operates at European and global levels. The European Commission has also


started to provide organisations with vital funding for programmes and projects that can unite countries in a common aim to bring about unified im- provement and change. Anti-doping and match-fixing are


perfect examples of issues that can, and arguably have to be, tackled by taking a Europe-wide approach if we are ever to improve integrity in sport.


ALL ABOARD How can we ensure that European coun- tries set the same stringent principles and standards to tackle doping in sport as the UK? European funding can help to address this issue. Taking the European approach to


projects can be a really useful oppor- tunity to exploit, and the Sport and Recreation Alliance has first-hand expe- rience in benefiting from it. Back in 2009, for example, we set


up WILD – the Women’s International Leadership Development programme – to up-skill potential women leaders, level the playing field and help women develop on a Europe-wide basis. Our most recent work is Better Boards


Funding from the EU can assist programmes that look to professionalise the sports industry 38 Read Sports Management online sportsmanagement.co.uk/digital


Stronger Sport – a unique project that’s been designed to empower sports or- ganisations to take responsibility for governing their future successfully. To put the funding into context, it helps to look at Europe’s history in this area – which won’t take long as it’s only


Issue 2 2013 © cybertrek 2013


PIC: ©SHUTTERSTOCK/PRESSMASTER


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