NOVIS Final Conference: a huge success with more than 250 participants

The final congress of NOVIS – No Violence In Sport (meet online), a project funded by the European Commission under the Erasmus + 2014/2020 program, aimed at preventing violence and racism in sport, took place on 9 and 10 November 2020 , which saw the ASD CGFS in the role of leader of various stakeholders: Tuscany Region, National CONI, New Community of Milan and other partners from Spain, Greece, Holland, Romania, Poland and Bulgaria. Work that has engaged nine partners to revisit in a broader key, the “Io Tifo Positivo” project, already active since 2006 and carried out in various Italian and European cities and regions, thanks above all to the commitment of Comunità Nuova di Milano, the non-profit organization of Don Gino Rigoldi.

The meeting scheduled in attendance, to be held inside the Rat Verlegh Stadium in Breda (Netherlands) in March 2019, due to restrictions on large gatherings and travel throughout Europe for the Covid-19 pandemic, first suffered a postponement , with the hope that the health emergency could return and then, with the continuation of the criticality, it was decided to carry it out anyway online on the expected end date.

The NOVIS congress was included, as a new program, within the three-day international event “More Than Football” organized by the Dutch partner EFDN, one of the largest gatherings of social and community responsibility experts in European sport, where more than 90 European sport clubs are present online to discuss the issues of gender equality, racism, sustainability, social inclusion, violence and unfortunately also new challenges such as the impact of Covid-19 with presentations and round tables in the world of sport, especially the youth one.

The team of NOVIS experts, including several from the CGFS, therefore entered this context of great international communication, with audiences over 250 contacts, bringing the reports of Professors Aleksandar Ivanovski and Ivana Marcov ČikiĆ both of the University of Health of Belgrade, by Professor Bujar Saiti of Saints Cyril and Methodius University of Skopje, the testimonies of NOVIS good practices at school and in sports clubs with reports by Magdalena Camenidis (Romania), Ricard Ventura (Spain), Tanya Kyriakidou (Greece) and of the CGFS designer Dr. Fabio Croci. But more than anything else with the intervention of Professor Francesca Vitali of the University of Verona and member of the Scientific Commission of the Training and Research Study Center of the ASD CGFS who presented the NOVIS Methodological Guide, which she herself prepared together with Prof. Salvatore Conte Director of the Training and Research Study Center.

Publication aimed at defining innovative teaching methodologies, a new and modern planning and “best practices” in order to stem the negative phenomena of violence in sport. In particular among young people, indicating what the future perspectives of the NOVIS method may be, so that words and good intentions can be transformed into actions and launching an appeal to teachers, coaches, managers and parents to experiment the “NOVIS Method” to prevent and counteract the physical and psychological violence in youth sport and in the various forms in which it can manifest itself.

The objective of the NOVIS Method is in fact, even before fighting violence, to prevent it, stemming the negative aspects we observe today in sports competitions: from the behavior of athletes, managers, parents to the fans on the playing fields and in gyms. Even at a youth and amateur level. Aware that many experiences to educate in the prevention of violence mostly begin in the school context, but must extend into the context of sports associations: from youth clubs to amateurs, from amateur clubs to professional ones. Today all in serious difficulty for the behavioral aspects of their athletes, managers, often parents and supporters, especially in competitive performance activities.

With these premises, the various international NOVIS teams have experimented for three years in six different European countries in school and extra-school camps: meetings, motor sessions, creative and play activities, video projections, conferences and more, in order to develop a calibrated didactic approach towards young people, students / athletes, but also towards other adult figures who come into contact with the world of sport. All this, with the intention of defining in the near future, after much experimentation in the field, a quality certification of the “NOVIS Method” (conceived and perfected in the CGFS), as specific training for sports educators, coaches and managers with the construction of suitable and complete “Training Units”, to develop an educational teaching with new forms, to be applied in various contexts.

In order to make the NOVIS project even more qualified, a research carried out by the IRIS Research Institute was also sought to study and analyze whether the continuous use (and prolonged over time) of certain teaching methodologies, both during the sessions of training that in the competitive contexts of competitions, have become a “correct style” and have allowed, not only to keep specific sporting skills intact and perhaps even a right “competitive aggression” in physical and sporting motor practice, simultaneously ensuring the acquisition of pro-social behaviors and non-violent attitudes.

In a subsequent article, we will host a more complete research report by Dr. Andrea Del Bono of IRIS who will provide the survey results and can also describe the complexity of the analysis in relation to the tools used: “The data analysis has taking into account more than 3000 questionnaires – filled in in Italian, English, Romanian, Greek, Dutch and Bulgarian – and administered before and after the sports camps.

Today, we might think that: could it be precisely the teaching methods of teachers, educators, coaches, parents, technicians and managers that “solicit attitudes” that do not always comply with sports ethics and precursors of violent behavior?
Questions that any educating figure must ask himself if we wish to train not only strong and technically capable sports athletes, but above all students-athletes-sportsmen-citizens capable of practicing and having fun in a civil confrontation with others, through sport. Hoping that every European citizen, whether he practices sport in a school or in a club, can always do it with joy and fun, under the banner of the values ​​of friendship and solidarity, always putting in place the highest values ​​of the culture of encounter that they unite the peoples of Europe even more, rejecting any kind of violence.

To learn more about NOVIS, a wonderful project developed in Prato for Europe: you can visit the website and after registering and affiliating for free, you can also download the Methodological Guide, the Games, the Videos, the Brochure, the Sport Chart, the Logbook and… all the NOVIS didactic material.
Teachers, Educators, Technicians and Instructors, Schools and Associations, who want to perfect their training, will then be able to start a study and research plan with the NOVIS Team through contacts with the appropriate sector of activity and the support of the Study Center of the CGFS.