With its 46 member countries, the Council of Europe covers virtually the entire European continent. Founded in 1949 by 10 countries in Strasbourg, the Council of Europe seeks to develop common and democratic principles based on the European Convention on Human Rights and other reference texts on the protection of individuals.
How can we end sexual violence against children in sports?
How can we inspire world leaders to take action on violence against children? How can we involve relevant stakeholders in as many counties as possible? What can we do without a budget?
Via our ‘futureplan method’, we involved IOC, FIFA, UEFA, federations, national sports organizations, governments, politicians, trainers, specialists, athletes, journalists, victims. Together, we developed the Start to Talk movement, calling world leaders and other stakeholders to take concrete steps towards ending sexual violence against children in sports.
The campaign turned into the central theme of the annual conference of Ministers responsible for Sport, in Tbilisi, with delegates from 43 countries. We moderated a very intense forum discussion about sexual abuse. This led to the Tbilisi Declaration, signed by 37 countries. Today, Start to Talk runs in twenty-five countries.
The campaign is translated into 24 different languages. It also led to a significant upscaling of (for instance) the Dutch center of safe sports.
Previously, together we developed the ‘High Time Movement” for the UN. This was a very intense, complex, and rewarding project with limited resources, dozens of stakeholders, and energy. After this project, the key person in this project, Elda Moreno, returned to the Council of Europe to fight abuse in sports. And because of our collective history and experience in abuse communications and sports, we joined forces in ‘Start to Talk’.