We are pleased to announce that the UK city of Birmingham will host the 8th MOVE Congress from 4-6 October 2017. One of the world’s only conferences dedicated to recreational sport and physical activity, the MOVE Congress is a highlight of the MOVE calendar and registration will open soon.This year’s MOVE Congress celebrates the “Human Right to MOVE”, as this will be the central theme of the conference, featuring sessions tackling topics such as reframing urban spaces for physical activity, building active school communities, removing barriers to hard-to-reach groups’ participation, and bringing physical activity back to nature. The last MOVE Congress was held in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 2015 at the street sport facility GAME. This year, our partners Birmingham City Council, Sport England, Youth Sport Trust, StreetGames and Wild Network are bringing the event to the UK for the first time. The Birmingham Conference and Events Centre will host the main sessions of the MOVE Congress and the opening will take place in the Birmingham Council House’s Banqueting Suite. Birmingham is a city that is leaping forward in physical activity promotion, proving it has successful strategies to reach some of the hardest to reach members of the community through innovative physical activity initiatives such as Active Parks, Big Birmingham Bikes, Active Streets, and other forms of free physical activity, both inside and outdoors. Karen Creavin, the Head of Birmingham Wellbeing Services at Birmingham City Council, says the MOVE Congress complements the work her city is doing to help hard-to-reach citizens become more active. “We are very excited to work with colleagues from ISCA to host this inspiring congress. Here in Birmingham we are working hard to combat the impact of inequalities and work with some of our most deprived communities to get people active and connected. To be able to host a congress on such an inspiring issue ‘The Human Right to Move’ and to be able to showcase some of the work we are doing here in the city, these are both great opportunities and we know the city will rise to the occasion,” she says. ISCA President Mogens Kirkeby says the value of the MOVE Congress is about bringing stakeholders from around the world around the same cause. “The MOVE Congress was developed to create an international platform that provides knowledge, inspiration and networks to stakeholders influencing and supporting increased participation in grassroots sport and recreational physical activity. It is the aim of the MOVE Congress to be an open space for sharing successes and challenges to foster innovative and successful future actions promoting a physically active lifestyle. The MOVE Congress is all about Moving People!” The International Sport and Culture Association’s General Assembly will follow the MOVE Congress on Saturday 7 October. We will re-launch the MOVE Congress website soon and invite international stakeholders in physical activity to be part of the most active forum for professionals and volunteers in our field.
By Rachel Payne, ISCA