On September 22nd, the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU organised the Conference on Sustainable and Accessible Sport Infrastructure in Prague, bringing together European experts and sport stakeholders.
Filip Neusser, President of the National Sport Agency of the Czech Republic, welcomed the participants to the conference and stressed the importance of the Conference’s topic for the Czech Presidency. Mr Neusser’s comments were followed by the welcoming remarks of Floor Van Houdt’s, Head of the European Commission’s Sport Unit, who reminded participants of the recently published Eurobarometer on Sport and Physical Activity, which highlighted disabilities as one of the main reasons for nor being active, emphasising the importance of accessible sport facilities.
The introductory remarks were followed by a series of panel discussions, one of which focussed on the road towards sustainability of sports infrastructure. The panel was moderated by Jana Havrdová, president of the Czech Fitness Chambers, who enquired with the panellist about the need of a healthy environment for a healthy lifestyle. Miguel Ardanuy Pizarro, Sustainability Manager with Go-Fit, who was one of the panellists, strongly agreed with this connection and expanded on some practical measures Go-Fit has implemented to decrease its environmental footprint, such as the investment in sustainable energy sources, cutting water use and implementing recycling policies for consumers and staff.
Mr Pizarro also stressed the importance of the EU’s commitment in this area and mentioned EuropeActive’s Green Audit project as a great example of how EU funding can support taking further steps in the right direction.
The Conference on Sustainable and Accessible Sports Infrastructure was immediately followed by a short HealthyLifestyle4All Seminar, which was hosted by the European Commission. The HealthyLifestyle4All initiative is midway its two-year duration and during the seminar the Commission took stock of progress and invited the latest pledges to be presented, bringing the total number of pledges to 75.
On September 23rd, the European Commission together with the Czech Presidency officially kicked-off the 8th European Week of Sport with an active festival in the Vyšehrad Park in Prague. EuropeActive is an official partner of the European Week of Sport and supports the initiative with its #BEACTIVE DAY campaign.