The covid-19 pandemic and crisis management measures have affected the way in which sport is practised and provided.
The crisis is requiring all sport stakeholders to develop innovative solutions to continue functioning, so that individuals and society can still benefit from sport and physical activity, especially for their health and well-being. However, for these benefits to become more sustainable, multi-stakeholder, cross sectoral policies and appropriate facilities would be required.
The core activity of organised sport in Europe largely relies on non-profit small clubs underpinned by a volunteer base that ensures a democratic model of sporting practice open and affordable to everyone, while nurturing local participation and community belonging, playing an indisputable social, educational and cultural role. In most sports organisations, revenues from competitive top-level events do benefit grassroots sports.
The suspension of competitions and cancellation of sporting activities along with mobility restrictions and lockdown have caused loss of revenue, cash flow difficulties, unemployment and lack of financial support to athletes and coaches from private sponsors, government grants, scholarships and traineeships, posing new and increasing moral and physical threats to athletes along with serious vulnerabilities to sports integrity. The economy of non-profit organised sport in Europe is currently at stake due to the unprecedented crisis hitting the events industry. Covid-19 bears long-term consequences in the sustainability of the sport movement, from grassroots to professional level.
The Parliamentary Assembly should urge public authorities to work in synergy with other stakeholders to deliver a clear action plan with concrete measures on: