Church Stretton Community Games in July 2018 exhibited how sport can assist and accelerate humanitarian efforts by local voluntary organisations. Highlighting the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, this article summarises how this claim is substantiated for all 17 goals.
- End poverty in all its forms everywhere.
35 sports in Strettons serve people to learn and practice life skills, make friends, develop talents and earn a living. Sport initiatives raise funds for poverty programmes. Sport develops teamwork skills to support job readiness.
- End hunger achieve food security & improved nutrition & promote sustainable agriculture.
Stretton sports, assisted by nutrition from local produce, can benefit families to enjoy balanced diets for progress at school and work. Sport can raise awareness on food waste and create educational initiatives to change behaviours.
- Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
Sport and play activities on Russells Meadow, Leisure Centre, Schools and Cardingmill Valley, play key roles in health. All encourage active lifestyles, mental well-being & friendships. Mayfair encourages individuals of all ages to adopt active lifestyles.
- Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.
Church Stretton sports-based activities offer a platform for learning in life, nurturing spirit, forming friendships, developing skills and accessing knowledge. Sport can improve learning outcomes by fostering achievement in education including U3A Church Stretton.
- Achieve gender equality and empower women and girls.
Equality and friendships amongst females and males in the Strettons through sporting activity can empower community to ‘raise its game’. Traditional sports, exclusively male in Strettons (e.g. rugby & cricket) now welcome females.
- Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all
Water bottling plant and National Trust in Cardingmill Valley can be effective learning resources for disseminating information on water and water sanitation. Water management standards in our new sports pavilion on Russells Meadow should be an exemplar.
- Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.
Local sporting activities provide a platform for winning respect, friendships and nurturing teamwork needed to engender clean energy and support Stretton Climate Care aims. Sports facilities and events can contribute to targets for renewable & clean energy.
- Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.
Prospects in Stretton are enhanced for people on demonstration of sporting and cultural achievements requiring leadership, skills and teamwork that are transferable and contribute to economic and sustainable growth.
- Build resilient infrastructure, promote sustainable industrialisation and foster innovation
Resilience & business needs benefit from sport-based initiatives in capacity-building, creating jobs, economic, social and environmental sustainable development. Sport is recognised as a cost-effective means to promote growth.
- Reduce inequality within and among countries
Development of sport in communities like Church Stretton can help to reduce gaps between local & other less fortunate communities. A positive attitude to sport make it a suitable tool for sharing and tackling inequality. Sport showcases ability.
- Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable.
Inclusion in sport is one of our main targets in Community Games. Accessible sports facilities contribute to advancement of this goal and can provide examples of best practice, such as the Longmynd Archers, for other market towns
- Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns
Incorporation of a sustainable development framework for sporting clubs can help with a community approach. A U3A Church Stretton Interest Group, together with 10 local voluntary organisations, has recently produced a framework for application.
- Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
Sport and leisure activities in Stretton can incorporate elements of raising awareness and knowledge of environmental sustainability. Best practice example is Stretton Climate Care – Sustainable Strettons initiative.
- Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.
Shropshire is the largest landlocked county in UK. However, people can learn the sport of swimming and water polo in the local pool, compete in swimming events and learn life-saving techniques to prevent drownings.
- Protect, restore & promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt & reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.
NT Cardingmill Valley offers education and advocacy for preservation of terrestrial ecosystems. Outdoor sport can incorporate safeguards and activities for promoting sustainable and environmentally respectful use of valued terrestrial resources.
- Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.
Community Games help to strengthen partnerships between sport & leisure organisations, reunite divided communities and promote mutual understanding. Local exemplars for sustainable development are the Scouts and Guides.
- Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalize the global partnership for sustainable development.
Sport serves as a vehicle for translating development objectives into reality. Local examples include Rotary Club where sporting investments are made over and overseen by a specific committee with an official in a leadership role.