BeFore Project Hosts Event to Combat Bullying in Sports

On June 14, 2024, DCU Anti-Bullying Centre hosted a significant event marking the culmination of the Erasmus+ funded BeFore project. This initiative focuses on improving educational training programs for coaches, trainers, teachers, and managers to enhance their skills in dealing with bullying, particularly in sporting contexts. The project has developed a comprehensive, far-reaching, and interdisciplinary online course offering evidence-informed insights on preventing and responding to bullying.

The event began with a presentation by the BeFore team, showcasing the main outcome of the project: the BeFore online training course on anti-bullying in sports. This was followed by keynote presentations from esteemed national and international experts in the field of inclusion in sport.

Declan O’Leary, Head of Coaching Services in Sport Ireland, was the first keynote speaker. He provided insights into evidence-informed inclusive coaching practices. Dr. Gus Ryrie of Liverpool John Moores University followed with a detailed discussion on developing contextually relevant coach research beyond practice, emphasising the need for co-creation and effective dissemination. The final presentation was delivered by Dr. Elisa Bisagno from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy, who spoke on ‘Can Coaches do the Trick? Psycho-educational Guidelines to Promote Inclusive Sports Environments’.

The event was well received by a passionate and enthusiastic audience, comprising academics, sports organisations, policymakers, and members of various sporting communities. Key takeaways from the event included the importance of disseminating key evidence to relevant sports coaches and the necessity of developing strong relationships between academics and sporting bodies to foster inclusive and supportive environments in sports. The event left attendees motivated and equipped with new strategies to combat bullying in their respective fields.

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