UNESCO Tehran Cluster Office participated in the “International Day of Sport for Development and Peace”, which was co-organized by the I. R. Iran Sports Federation for the Disabled, the Iranian Paralympic Committee and the Iranian National Commission for UNESCO on 1 May 2019. Mr. Cvetan Cvetkovski, Officer-in-Charge of the UNESCO Office and Ms. Saray Lobato De La Fuente, Consultant for Social and Human Science Sector of UNESCO attended the event and Mr. Cvetan Cvetkovski delivered a speech in the event.
At the beginning of the event, Mr. Cvetan Cvetkovski along with other governmental participants joined the Iranian disabled Boccia athletes and played the game of Boccia with them. Boccia, which a is precision ball sport taken up widely among the disabled sportswomen and sportsmen around the world, is of increasing popularity in Iran.
Later in the first speech given by Dr. Ahmadi, the Deputy Minister for Cultural Affairs of the Ministry of Sport and Youth, he emphasized the significant role of sport in the process of achieving peace around the world. He also confirmed that the authority of Iran has inserted a huge investment to the development of sport for all.
In the speech delivered by Mr. Cvetan Cvetkovski, he pressed on the important role of sport in achieving social inclusion and adaption: “Regardless of age, gender or ethnicity, sport is enjoyed by all; its reach is unrivalled. Throughout history, we see many examples of motivational stories of how expanding sporting opportunity leads to greater inclusion in society overcoming prejudice against different groups, including people living with a disability. Sport is a catalyst for inclusion of persons with disabilities in society. It can help reduce the stigma and discrimination associated with disability because it can transform community attitudes about persons with disabilities by highlighting their skills and reducing the tendency to see the disability instead of the person”.
In the later part of his speech, he also presented the past actions that UNESCO carried out for promoting Sport for person with disabilities and encouraged people to foster the implementation in this field.
The ceremony of the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace was concluded by a video clip showing the achievement that the Iranian disabled athletes had fulfilled in the Paralympic Games.