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SSCN / RESEARCH  / MANAGEMENT  / Sustainability 004 – Whitley, Forneris and Baker 2015

Sustainability 004 – Whitley, Forneris and Baker 2015

What is it about? (Aim/objectives)

Four different sport-for-development programmes focusing on Positive Youth Development (PYD) where NGOs are involved, are discussed in terms of what made them more sustainable.

Where is it from? (Context/location)

The four different programmes are: i) Refugee Sport Club in Michigan; ii) PULSE program in Ottowa, iii) Project Nepal; and iv) Ikaya Sport Programme in South Africa.

Who are involve? (Research participants)

Young people from underserved (impoverished communities), in Nepal also undergraduate university students (local and from Canada) and local peer-leaders and local stakeholders (e.g. schools and parents).

What are the readings and main concepts?

The Positive Youth Development (PYD) approach which is strength-based and asset-building by focusing on holistic development rather than a deficit approach that focuses on social ills to be remedied. PYD programmes are effective in promoting prosocial and intentionally designed developmental outcomes and supported by appropriate resources (e.g. staff and local stakeholder involvement).

Four types of sustainability include: i) individual sustainability, ii) community sustainability, iii) organizational, and iv) institutional sustainability. This article focuses on organizational sustainability which is defined as: ‘the maintenance or expansion of sports programmes by an organisation responsible for the delivery’, and institutional sustainability, defined as ‘longer-term changes in policy, practice, economic and environmental conditions in the wider context of the sports development programme’ (p. 410, cited from Lindsey, 2008).

What are the main findings? (Results)

There are different approaches to development with the inside-up model most likely to be sustainable. Good practices relate to partnerships, planning, capacity building, objectives and recruitment, M & E and funding.

What are the main lessons? (Discussion/Reflections/Learnings)

Organizational and institutional sustainability requires:

  • Partnerships – trust researcher(s) who spend quality time with organization; involve local instructors who knows local culture and needs (if partner with international volunteers); diversified and local; develop mutual understanding over time and formal/contractual (e.g.MoU) and ensure continuation (succession).
  • Planning – plan for sustainability and different type of transitions such as change of leadership; integration with other organisation and/or programmes (e.g. in schools); involvement and training of teachers though sessions, camps and course work; align with partner organisations (e.g. share resources – also funding and logistical needs (e.g. expansion or integrate with programmes at certain facilities, schools or clubs).
  • Capacity building – facilitate partner training; leadership development; offer trainings to community leaders and parents; and utilise the train the-trainer approach. Offer continuous trainings to instructors and peer educations, whilst making scholarships available for further education and training. Ensure succession by transfer responsibilities over time and develop own and local learning materials.
  • Objectives and recruitment – targeted recruitment of instructors with links to local communities and involve schools or local clubs to recruit participants.
  • Monitoring and evaluation (M & E) – continuous to get feedback and summative to decide if a programme should be adapted or continued; assessments (systematic review) for strategic planning, use information to adapt programme design and improve implementation and have clear achievable outcomes.
  • Funding – diversify and tap into international and national multiple-year funding and develop relationship with funders
Is it useful? (Chat room, knowledge sharing)

If you think about organizational and institutional sustainability, how would you rate your own organisation in terms of: partnerships, planning, capacity building, objectives and recruitment, M & E and funding? What would you consider to be particularly: i) good practices to share with others, or ii) challenges to find solutions?

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