COUNTRY OF CUIJK | “Sport should be accessible to everyone, regardless of age, budget or, for example, a disability,” says the municipality of Land van Cuijk. With the sports agreement, the municipality wants to achieve that everyone can enjoy sports. In this sports agreement, all kinds of objectives have been formulated that are intended to achieve this. All these objectives are of course also linked to an implementation budget. People who have a wonderful sporting idea are given the opportunity to receive a budget through the sports agreement. A core team, including sports and exercise providers, education providers, village councilors and the municipality, takes a decision on the applications. If the sporting idea meets all the conditions, for example whether it is realistic and whether the target group is large enough, then the wonderful idea can become reality.
The sports agreement is widely applicable. To give an example, we spoke with Peggy Kuijpers, from De Huuskamer day spending. Here, the sports agreement has been used for the ‘Silverfit Mile bicycle’, which makes it possible for guests to virtually cycle through an environment of their choice. This can be in your own village, or through a popular holiday destination. Just like in real life, the cycling movement determines how fast you cycle, in this case on the screen. “It is as if you are really cycling through a landscape. It encourages everyone to cycle, but it also encourages others to talk about the environment,” explains Ms Kuijpers. In an interview, Ms Kuijpers tells more about her experience with the sports agreement:
How did the idea for the Silverfit Mile bike come about?
“A colleague had seen this bike somewhere and because of her enthusiasm we started looking into whether it could also be feasible and whether it could be an addition to our program. This was certainly important to investigate, as it is a major financial purchase. We went to see locations where they already owned this bike and became more and more convinced and enthusiastic. We also have a side-by-side tandem that is often used in the spring and summer, but in the autumn and winter it was more difficult to cycle outside. The silverfit Mile overcomes this.”
How did the sports agreement help with this?
“The sports agreement has given us a financial boost to raise the amount. We had already set aside donations for this project for a few years and organized activities to raise money. By engaging the sports agreement, we were able to collect the amount and proceed to purchase.”
Why is exercise such an important part of De Huuskamer day spending?
“Exercise is very important to us because it has been proven that a lot of exercise is good for the brain. With sufficient exercise, the brain produces a substance that also gives you a good feeling. Group exercise is also good for mutual communication. When we think of exercise, we don’t just think of sports, but also movement exercises to, for example, be able to comb your hair yourself for as long as possible or get up from the chair independently.”
How did the guests react to the Silverfit Mile bike?
“The guests are very enthusiastic about this Silverfit Mile bike. The bike is used every day and the guests love the virtual cycling. They can choose the village or country where they want to go cycling. In the beginning they were told at home that they had cycled in Barcelona. In the beginning, this raised questions among family members. We also cycle in groups (we have also added a floor bike) which creates conversation and solidarity. Moving is so much easier when you see moving images and can talk to each other about what there is to see. Because the bicycle is located in Oelbroeck where people can meet each other, we hope that the elderly from the village will use this virtual bicycle, and that in this way a meeting place will be created for the elderly from the village.”
Alderman Willy Hendriks-van Haren: “A lot of good things are already happening in the municipality of Land van Cuijk in the field of sport and exercise. The sports agreement offers the opportunity to strengthen this. So do you have a plan to make sport accessible to more people? Then sign up for the sports agreement!”
Do you also want to use the sports agreement for your sports initiative?
At the moment there is a local sports agreement for every former municipality within the Land van Cuijk. These can be found via www.gemeentelandvancuijk.nl/sport Agreement† View the conditions and submit an idea. “This is how we make sports accessible to everyone together!”