The special European Fitness Association Forum (EFAF), the 8th of the series, took place on Tuesday 30th June with focus on future cooperation and collaboration between EuropeActive and its 23 national and trade associations.
David Stalker, President, started by saying that “we are entering a new era with a new strategy to enable EuropeActive to develop its position as the single competent body for the European fitness and physical activity sector”. He added that "a fundamental review of EuropeActive’s strategy in the short term and with longer-term planning and resourcing to 2025 the need to grow the capacity and political power of our National Associations, as well as a commitment from EuropeActive, is essential to grow the voice of National Associations in our thinking and actions”.
The EFAF Roundtable covered the expansion of new opportunities around developing political and policy development based on the EREPS Programme of national registers, and the application of the CEN Fitness Centre Scheme – both aimed at helping to professionalise the sector. Detailed resources are already available to help national associations to promote these in their countries. Moving forward the characteristics and requirements of national associations will be defined in 5 key points and based on these, higher levels of services and support from EuropeActive will become available. EuropeActive has also re-organised to better respond to deliver of its new strategic plan which national associations are invited to comment upon.
Matteo Zacchetti from the European Commission introduced the plans for the European Week of Sport in September, and praised EuropeActive for its contributions and especially the success of #BEACTIVE HOUR campaign in May. EuropeActive will be providing active support to national associations to deliver their own National Fitness Day campaigns as part of the European Week of Sport and highlighted how finances and other resources could be available from national coordinators of the Week. 13 national associations are already connected with the National Fitness Day campaigns through EU-funded projects with EuropeActive.
Executive Director Andreas Paulsen said: “we must make sure that our relationship is based on common values, mission and vision and that we stand as the undisputed sector body in Europe. To be clear, this also means a commitment from EuropeActive to grow the voice of National Associations in our thinking and actions. We underscore our common core mission of more people, more active, more often and to ensure we are the leading European voice for the fitness and physical activity sector”.