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Date: 2/9/2019
 

The week of February 4th to 9th saw the third edition of the French Ministry of Education initiative, Olympic and Paralympic Week. This year, the theme was diversity, in both sport and everyday life.
 
The goal of the Olympic and Paralympic Week is to raise students’ awareness of the Olympic values, promote sport as an educational tool, help young people change their views on disability and inspire them to practice sport themselves, and also encourage an interest in volunteering. The week sees a multitude of activities organised to help achieve these aims, including meetings between students and athletes, courses on different sporting disciplines and disability awareness events.
 
According to member of the Board of Directors for the French Handball Federation, Pascale Jeannin, “the Olympic and Paralympic Week is an additional opportunity to further strengthen our ties with the (French) Ministry of National Education.”
 
As part of the Olympic and Paralympic Week (abbreviated to SOP in French), the French Handball Federation welcomed 120 children and young people to the Maison du Handball in Creteil, where they had the opportunity to play four-a-side handball. In addition, a debate on sporting values, Olympism, diversity and education through sport was held in front of 280 participants in the Mauson du Handball’s state-of-the-art auditorium. 
 
“The operation combines physical and sporting practices with moral and civic education and uses sport as a resource for learning in different disciplines. It is also an opportunity to work on themes such as fair play, the values ​​of sport, Olympism and Paralympism, and the equality, health and inclusion of students with disabilities,” the French Handball Federation website said of the event.
 
In light of the major women’s sporting events held in France over recent and upcoming months – the EHF EURO 2018 and the Football World Cup – there was a special focus on gender equality.
 
Outside of handball, other activities that formed part of SOP included a relay featuring great French athletes Christina Aaron, Medhi Baala, Dimitri Bascou and Jimmy Vicaut.

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