One of the top factors thought to be contributing to Qatari’s societal lack of participation in sport and physical activity is a general shortfall in accessibility both to facilities and properly trained coaches and/or teachers, specifically where women and persons with disability are concerned. The Government of Qatar is addressing this issue through the implementation of several initiatives.
Physical education curriculum in schools and other independent centers will be examined and revamped to include curriculum that focuses on activities for students with physical or learning disabilities. In addition to the provision of physical educational guidelines, professional development opportunities and a certification program will be allotted to teachers to ensure they are properly prepared. Teachers will be encouraged to lead activities that foster integration, perhaps appointing student leaders to coordinate co-ed sport and recreational peer-groups.
Ministry of Education and Higher Education will review all current school sports facilities and equipment to ensure they are indeed equipped with the infrastructure necessary to support the physical needs of all students.
In the Community
The Active Qatar Campaign will advocate and educate Qatari men, women and children on the importance of healthy and active living. The campaign will develop strategy to address priority groups whose activity levels are lower than average or who show a higher risk for developing inactivity-related disease. These groups include the elderly, persons with disabilities, and persons living with conditions such as diabetes and obesity.
The Government recognizes that as participation in sport grows so too must the facilities where they take place. The Government will work with schools and the Aspire Zone Foundation to ensure current facilities are made as accessible to the resident public and target groups as possible, and where these current facilities fall short, find the sustainable lands, accessible to both residents and spectators, on which to construct new facilities.
In the World
Qatar shows an ever-increasing presence on the athletic world front, largely due to the efforts of the Ministry of Culture and Sports. In line with these efforts increased mechanisms for recognizing, categorizing and fostering athletic talent will be developed. This will include athletic development models tailored to women and persons with disabilities, encouraging their currently under-represented presence within elite sports. Coaches and human resources will need be provided training to better serve and inspire these target groups.
Encouraging the participation of all members of society in sport and active living is proven to directly positively influence many other aspects of society. It is aimed that with increased athletic involvement, women, elderly and persons with disabilities will feel more empowered, more involved, and in turn encourage their children and family members to engage in more active, healthy behaviors as well