PROJECT OBJECTIVES

Objective 1: To guide the development of the I Value program and future values based interventions through a scoping review of literature that maps current values based education in a school based setting and identifies gaps in current doping prevention knowledge.

Objective 2: Through a whole-school approach co-develop, implement and evaluate an evidence-based values program for grassroots sport, targeting schoolchildren (6 to 14 years) and their teachers and parents.

Objective 3: Increase school teachers’ capability, opportunity and motivation to adopt and implement values based education program.

Objective 4: Activate parents through a brief intervention (focused on capability, opportunity and motivation) to adopt the principles of values based behaviour in raising their children.

Objective 5: Scientifically evaluate the efficiency of the developed program in terms of reaching the pre-defined outcomes of the program and providing improvement potential if appropriate.

Objective 6: Increase the size and depth of values based doping prevention research, policy and practice networks through multiplier event, which serve to introduce the program to other National Anti-Doping Organisations as a model of how to implement early primary doping.

Objective 7: Extend the focus of the Clean Sport Alliance Knowledge Exchange Platform to include research and practice pertaining to values based education.

PROJECT DESIGN

The project is designed based on several starting points. First, children get involved in organized sport at the age six to eight. That means that values-based doping prevention programs should start at this point as well which was not a practice so far. Second, defining most influential figures in children’s lives at this stage is crucial in order to develop proper prevention programs. At the beginning of one’s sport career parents and school teacher play the most important role in children lives so prevention programs should target them as well. Defining schoolteachers as one of the most influential figures is one of the reasons that this project will be implemented in schools and not in sport clubs. Schoolteachers will also be actively involved in developmental stage of the program. Implementation of programs in schools means, that also children that are not actively involved in sport get educated – with the raising number of people (who are not athletes) using substances to improve their strength, image, concentration etc. we believe, it is very important that prevention programs target the entire population to some extent. As is stated in Article 18 of World Anti-Doping Code, prevention programs should be values based with a particular focus on young people through implementation in school curricula. This project gives a great starting point for each participating country to start the process of including values-based anti-doping content into their curricula.

The implementation of the project will be based on predefined work packages and task groups that integrate and complement each other, have precisely defined objectives, activities, timetables with milestones, outputs and deliverables, and the roles and responsibilities of individual organizations.

INNOVATIVE ASPECTS

The I Value project is unique in several aspects:

1. A rare primary prevention approach: Doping prevention programs around the world are mostly targeting athletes aged 14 years and over. However, values-based prevention should begin when children get involved in organized sport (usually this happens between age 6 and 8). This means that the content of prevention programs has to be adapted in a way that it will be suitable for children and that it will have a long-term influence on their behaviour. Through the promotion of the I Value progam and its development, implementation and evaluation, we hope to foster greater belief among the NADO community and the sports movement on the importance of initiating the process of protecting the integrity of sport from an early age.

2. Evidence-informed: With the initial gathering and reviewing of the relevant literature, the findings will be taken into account so that the prevention program will be evidence informed. In the field of doping prevention, few programs are theory informed or based on empirical evidence. With this project, we would like to demonstrate the importance of adopting an evidence-informed approach to developing, implementing and evaluating an intervention program.

3. Co-developed with teachers: In the phase of development of the prevention program, teachers, which will participate in the pilot study, will be invited to co-develop the program. Involving teachers in the developmental phase is important to ensure their engagement, capability, opportunity and motivation to implement the program. Evidence suggest that teachers are more likely to implement the program if they co-develop the resource.

4. Social inclusion: Recognising teachers and parents are some of the most influential figures in children’s lives at early stage; this program will be implemented in schools rather than in sport clubs. Implementation of programs in schools and the whole-school approach mean that also children that are not actively involved in sport get educated – with the raising number of people (who are not athletes) using substances to improve their strength, image, concentration etc. we believe it is very important that prevention programs target entire populations through a comprehensive approach.

5. Holistic program: Emphasising healthy lifestyle throughout the prevention program will create synergies between the field of sport and the field of health. With different activities in the scope of the program, we will promote sport as an activity that will improve one’s health and encourage children to play sport in a healthy and fair way.

6. Accessibility: Materials for schools that will be included in the prevention program, will be prepared in such a from, that it will minimize the requirements for teacher training. However, since this will be a first early primary doping prevention program, workshops for teachers will be carried out in order to properly motivate and educate teachers and to ensure high quality of the implementation. In the phase of development the program, teacher will also be included as co-developers.

7. Longitudinal: Comprehensive evaluation of the program that will follow longitudinal approach with at least two time points of measure (before and after the intervention) and a control group, that will not receive the intervention. This approach will determine the effectiveness of the prevention program.

8. Sustainable through the Clean Sport Alliance: The program will be made available and accessible to all in the EU and beyond through the Clean Sport Alliance Knowledge Exchange Platform that is being developed through the RESPECT project (an Erasmus+ Collaborative Partnership). Teachers will be able to access training in a flexible and inclusive way thus breaking many barriers to education.

9. Not-for-profit venture: I Value aims solely to protect the integrity of sport by fostering sporting integrity from an early age.

I VALUE CONFERENCE

In October 2022 I Value conference will be organised in Slovenia. At the conference project outputs and results will be presented to key stakeholders, especially National Anti-Doping Organisations. The conference will also serve as a great networking opportunity among participants as doping prevention experts from across Europe will gather at the same place. Exchange of knowledge, ideas and practises is one of the most important things for everyone working in doping prevention so we invite everyone to join us at the conference.

If you want to participate at the conference, please contact dr. Nina Makuc (nina.makuc@sloado.si)