7.3 Sport, youth fitness and physical activity
There is no current national strategy since the institutions that are primarily responsible for issues of culture, sport and leisure time of youth are ministries at the entity level. The BiH Ministry of Civil Affairs is responsible at the state level.
The main challenges for young people in this field are:
- Legal disorder
- Lack of strategy or strategic framework for the development and investment in the field of culture and sport
- The absence of a programmatic approach
- Lack of adequate institutional capacity
- Poor coordination and cooperation between different levels/institutions of government in BiH
- Financial difficulties
- Incompetence and lack of qualification of a part of sports staff.
Promoting and supporting sport and physical activity among young people
Currently, there are no specific support measures at any level that are targeting the promotion and support of the sport and physical activity among young people. There are specific funds dedicated to sport collectives at both national and entity level but no specific funds just for youth sport. Most of the sport clubs, however, are working and promoting sport and physical activities in their work.
Physical education in primary and secondary schools are regulated by the Framework Law on Primary and Secondary Education in BiH.
Entity laws on education defines, more details the physical education in schools. FBiH as well as RS and BD BiH implement two mandatory physical activity classes per week, both in primary and secondary education cycles. Other than obligatory physical school classes, most of the school organize sport teams in football, basketball, handball or volleyball (the most popular sports) and most of those sports teams are extracurricular activity. Available curriculums for all level education in RS are listed at the RS Republic Pedagogical Institute webpage, while FBiH only adopted the Framework Curricula for Nine-Years Education.
Youth Sports Games are the biggest amateur sports event where children and youth from BiH schools can participate. The Games are organized in 3 countries: BiH, Croatia and Serbia. In 2019, 202,000 participants competed.
Youth Sports Games started in 1996 in Split, Croatia. The primary motive was to enable high-school students to participate in organized sporting events and other free activities.
Children and young people from all participating countries are offered the possibility of attending the competitions free of charge. The most successful individuals and teams are granted a “mini vacation” in the form of participating in the International finals.
The EYOF 2019 (European Youth Olympic Festival) is the biggest sport event organized in BiH, after the 1984 Winter Olympic Games held in Sarajevo. The EYOF was held between 9th and 16th February 2019. The vision and idea of organizing EYOF in Sarajevo and East Sarajevo was initiated by the Presidency of NOC BiH.
The BiH Olympic Committee, as a guarantor of credibility for the candidacy, together with the host cities Sarajevo and East Sarajevo signed a contract with the EOC for the organization of this major sport event.
The Opening Ceremony on the 10thFebruary 2019, held under the slogan “We create together”, was attended by 25,000 people. The Closing Ceremony was held on February 15th, 2019.
A total number of 904 athletes from 46 European countries, members of the EOC, competed in 8 sports (32 disciplines) at seven Venues.