University of Mons (BELGIUM)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2020 Proceedings
Publication year: 2020
Pages: 5623-5629
ISBN: 978-84-09-17939-8
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2020.1523
Conference name: 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2020
Location: Valencia, Spain
Physical and sporting activities are frequently used to reduce urban violence. In Belgium, many initiatives to improve the integration of youth through sport are so implemented each year in disadvantaged neighborhoods (Beltramini, Delfosse, Piéron, & Cloes, 2000). Sport gives young people educational landmarks and helps them to better integrate adult society (Pantaléon, 2003). Indeed, the educational practices implemented in sports activities allow achieving several objectives: acquisition of sports culture, development of motor skills, improvement of social life habits, personal development, sensitization to inclusive practice and acquisition of new health and well-being habits (Charrier & Jourdan, 2015). Practicing sports in club can be an obstacle for young people coming from disadvantaged backgrounds because it requires to respect very strict operating rules (Briche, 2004) and imposes quite important financial investment (equipment, license…), while the objective of social workers in the neighborhoods is essentially to improve integration, citizenship and adequate social behavior (Prévitali, Coignet & Marchiset, 2015).

In our research, we met nine young French-speaking Belgians (eight boys and one girl) who participate in sports activities organized by a youth center. They were between 13 and 26 years old and played street football with the association. Four tools were used to collect the data: an anamnestic questionnaire, Coopersmith's self-esteem inventory (1984), Chambon's self-efficacy rating scale (1992) and a semi-directive interview.

Our results show that our subjects participate in this type of activity to be in contact with other young people without having to respect strict game rules. They also emphasize that their precarious financial situation leads them to choose this sports organization and that the activities offered to keep them busy during their free time. They also say they can develop their communication with others who come from the same social environment and strengthen family ties when they play with their siblings. As shown by the results on the self-esteem scale, they have good self-esteem, mainly in the family dimension. Our results also highlight that young people have a positive perception of their personal efficacy. They also point out that this type of sports organization allows them to get educational support and advice from qualified professionals, which helps them to socialize and to motive themselves again for school. Finally, it is interesting to note that our subjects focus their leisure activities only on the sport they chose (street football). This is in accord with the research of Briche (2015) who shows that disadvantaged young people often concentrate on mediatized sports such as football, tennis or basketball.
Education through sport, disadvantaged youth, street football.