International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

What is the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace?

The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) is an annual celebration that highlights and promotes the power of sport as a catalyst for social change in all corners of the world.

Since  2014,  following a  decision by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, the IDSDP has been celebrated  each year on 6 April, creating a historical link to the first modern Olympic Games in 1896.

The IOC, in its capacity of Permanent Observer to the UN, has been supportive of this initiative as it values its potential to recognise sports organisations’ role in and contribution to social change and human development.

Read the full text of the UN Resolution here

Last year’s first celebration saw an overwhelming response from the Olympic and sports movement, with the organisation of hundreds of runs, sports tournaments, educational and peace-building activities, as well as exhibitions and discussion forums to address and highlight the power of sport as a catalyst for social change, development and peace.

Sport as a universal tool for development

The IDSDP offers a new opportunity to promote sport and physical activity as a cost-effective and meaningful tool that can address a wide range of needs related to: education, health, social inclusion, youth development, gender equality, peace building and sustainable development. It also provides a notable platform to advocate among governments for more investment in sport, related infrastructure and quality physical education for youth.

This event celebrates the work that is being carried out around the world by the IOC, National Olympic Committees, International and National Sports Federations, sports clubs, governmental and non-governmental organisations, neighbourhood associations and all other entities and volunteers who believe that sport is an effective tool for social development.

Using sport to promote development and peace has been at the core of the IOC’s mission since its creation in 1894. Pierre de Coubertin, the IOC’s founder, was explicit in his desire to use Olympism as a means to promote harmony among individuals and nations. It is therefore apt that this International Day emphasises the positive impact of sport and physical education at all levels from casual practice to competitive sport.

The annual IDSDP is also a fitting complement to the celebration of Olympic Day, which, introduced by the IOC in 1948, commemorates the founding of the modern Olympic Movement, each year on 23 June. Millions of people in countries around the world participate in a wide variety of Olympic Day activities, from sport to educational and cultural activities.

Visit the UN official page on the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

More information on what is going on in the world of sport and development can be found at: www.sportanddev.org