“GENTLEMEN“ IN THE UEFA 2021 GROW AWARDS COMPETITION￼
Fan association Gentlemen participated in December 2021 competition for UEFA Grow Awards in the category of “Fan engagement projects“.
The Project was initiated and managed by Fan Association Gentlemen-Serbia, with the support of Football Association of Serbia and funded by UEFA hattrick – football and social responsibility programme. Major project deliverables were the educational workshops cycle for pupils in 9 Belgrade schools with subsequent survey results, the project brochure to be disseminated as an OER and cross-cultural cooperation.
Objectives related to the most important policies in sport were achieved:
• Encouraging social inclusion and equal opportunities in sport: analysis, reveailing bad and promoting good behaviors, sharing own example; • Promotion of European traditional sports: promoted genuine values of football as central sport in the Balkans fans environment; • Promote education in and through sport: workshops for school kids and OER for all stakeholder groups; • Successful transnational cooperation
Project aroused a great interest of stakeholders related to issues we are tackling, at first Ministry of Education of Serbia, city secretariats for youth, sport and education, which declared their will and consent to support this project to be implemented on the entire territory of Serbia, covering all primary schools. The continuity of this project is in line with the strategy of Football Association of Serbia and project coordinators – Fan Association Gentlemen. The strategy of next steps envisages: • the continuation of workshops in all major Serbian cities and perhaps neighbouring countries • appropriation of program content for various target groups involved: school teachers, parents, sport trainers in grass-root clubs, institutions • dissemination of Project Booklet and other results to target groups and wider audience This was a pioneer project where one organised Fan group communicate the positive values of fan-cheering to the children in organised educative action. It is genuine in the aspect that the group of mature fans shows their own positive example, which is not only fair-play cheering, nice travel experiences and friendships with people around the world, but also the way how they grew to became able to enjoy these experiences. The formula/ message they are conveying is to complete the school, find employment, grow as professionals and person with family values, who become able to invest a part of earnings in a hobby which is sport fan cheering in the country and abroad. The workshops allowed the encounter between many of Gentlemen fan association members with the children, showing them that they are ordinary people (not some extravagant rich guys) who are also fans cheering at the stadiums, just keeping the right attitude.