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ChildHope's Programmes Manager for Brazil and West Africa, Natasha Kwakwa-Tesfai, recently attended the 2012 Beyond Sport Summit in London from 23-25 July. The international summit was designed to celebrate, promote and drive forward sport-led social change around the world.

'Practicing Sport, Winning in Life'
ChildHope has recently started an exciting new project 'Practising Sport, Winning in Life', using sport to foster social development and gender equality among young people living in poor communities in Brazil, thanks to the support of Comic Relief. The summit was a great opportunity to learn how other organisations around the world are using sport as a medium to bring about change.
Inspirational work from around the world using sport to bring about change
The breadth of work being supported and carried out was inspirational; from projects promoting peace development between rival gangs in Sierra Leone through football and sports-based HIV health education in Lesotho to promoting safe areas for children to play sport in deprived neighbourhoods of London.

As a part of the summit the participants visited a Community Action Zone in Kennington, where a community driven organisation had been able to establish a sports centre in the middle of a housing estate. This project involved taking a piece of waste land in a deprived part of London and turning it into a centre for thousands of young people with basketball courts, boxing ring, athletics track, state-of-the-art gym, Astroturf 5-a-side pitches, a community garden, art room and courses to prepare young people for work.

'The young people and mentors are so inspirational. And, the private sector partnerships are a great way to make their work sustainable. I am looking forward to sharing the strategies I have heard here with our partner Promundo in Brazil to ensure our project achieves an excellent impact.'

Natasha Kwakwa-Tesfai - ChildHope Programme Manager for Brazil

Learning and sharing to improve our projects
The summit provided a unique opportunity for networking and learning through a combination of workshops and panels covering such topics as communication, project sustainability and project monitoring and evaluating. Attending the conference was an invaluable opportunity for ChildHope. It enabled us to share our experience and also learn from others' knowledge and skills. We will transfer this to our local partner in Brazil and also our other partners in Africa, Asia and South America to assist with their continued growth and development.

The summit also brought together many inspirational leaders in this sector to talk about their experiences of positive sport-led social change. Speakers such as Michael Johnson, Bob Beamon, John Amaechi, and Lawrence Dallaglio were able to talk about their own personal experiences and how they have witnessed the positive change sport can bring to communities and young people. ChildHope has gained a lot from this summit and has taken away a drive to ensure that our partner Promundo in Brazil attends the conference next year and is able to tell a story about the success they have achieved.

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