There are two basic targets perspectives: inclusion into sport and inclusion through sport. Inclusion into sport focuses primarily on the introduction of migrants, ethnic minorities or other under-represented groups to sport and facilitation of the capacity to act within sport. It calls for regular, long-term participation in sports and an improvement of athletic skills and achievements. It is based on the premise that involvement in areas of sport already represents an instance of inclusion. In doing so, the involvement in a sport club can create particularly favorable conditions for further inclusion processes since sport associations are characterized by the fact that training and practice sessions take place regularly and almost without exception in groups, and that sporting activities often take place within the framework of other social activities that provide additional opportunities for intercultural communication.
One of the nationwide program of the German Olympic Sports Federation is the program «Integration through Sport», funded by the Federal Ministry of the Interior and the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees. The German Olympic Sports Federation is responsible for the program coordination at the federal level. Main aim is to increase the participation of migrants in sport clubs in Germany through, both, the promotion of sport clubs that especially attract migrants and the creation of easier access to those clubs, primarily for people with an immigrant background.
In regions with high immigration rates in Germany, government and regional sports federations offer the chance to develop target group specific programs and opportunities in order to test them in terms of their inclusion potential.
For example, the «Spin-Sport Interkulturell» model project, which promotes inclusion at a regional level and focuses on girls and young women with an immigration background. The model project «spin» has been running since 2007 in selected towns in the Ruhr area of Duisburg, Essen, Gelsenkirchen and Oberhausen and is set to run for 11 years. It is implemented by the regional sport alliance of North Rhine Westphalia with support from the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees and the Ministry for Generations, Family, Women and Inclusion of the federal state of North Rhine Westphalia. The goal is to support sport clubs as «institutions of borough-related integration» and to enable a systematic encouragement of the process of inclusion, particularly of young girls and women from 10 to 18 years of age with a migrant background.
Such important building blocks as professional further education programs also count for inclusion and the encouragement of participation in public life. The governing body of the Berlin football clubs, the Berlin Football Association, from 2007 to 2010 implemented the «Inclusion through Qualification» project with the support of the Federal Ministry for Migration and Refugees.
The first vocational and further education offer was aimed particularly at volunteers acting as club officials for migrant clubs who had, in the past, expressed uncertainty in dealing with bureaucratic structures, regulations and cooperation with sports institutions. To clear up these shortcomings and remove insecurity, courses were offered directly to club officials. Where the aim for the clubs is to train young volunteers for tasks in the future. There were conducted 3 hours sessions with diverse context of the modules, specific to sport and sport club management and committee work. Also there were organized and conducted the courses for coaches and trainers which specifically teach the safe handling of multicultural teams.
Sporting opportunities can realize their potential to integrate effectively and sustainable when they function in a gender-oriented manner. In Germany were implemented several sport programs for inclusion of girls and women through sport such as the «Discover Football –the female perspective» project. This powerful network brings women together in and through football, facilitating encounters and promoting women’s rights. The «Sport with Muslim girls and young women» project run by Youth Sport Lower Saxony, contact with the target group of Muslim girls was made by searching out meeting places and facilities where the girls and young women congregated, e.g. school, cultural associations but also mosques. Because the mosque is an important community oriented space in which the girls receive Quran lessons, sing and celebrate together, thus the idea developed to initiate sport programs within a mosque as it represents a living environment already possessing the trust of the parents. In such a way, a condition allowing the girls’ participation in sport programs has been fulfilled.
One of the most useful variants of inclusion of migrants into and through sport is migrant sport clubs. The term migrant sport club refers to those clubs with members from a predominantly migrant background and whose club identity and external perception are linked to the origins of the majority of the members. The major importance of migrant sport clubs is to facilitate the participation in sport and competition of migrants. Migrant sport clubs are frequently more attractive to migrants as host nationality clubs since there are no linguistic or cultural barriers and those active are shielded from racism and discrimination, at least within the club. In this way, many migrants are introduced through their membership in such sport clubs to the nature of clubs of the host country and to participation in sporting competitions. In Germany one of the biggest and the most well-known migrant club is Türkiyemspor, which was formed in 1978 in West Berlin. It has become the figurehead of Berlin’s Turkish community and the multicultural district of Kreuzberg.
The other project, called «the Kicking Girls» exists in various schools in urban quarters with high proportion of migrant youth. The schools in cooperation with nearby cooperation clubs, provide so-called girl’s working groups in the school and the coaches are mostly female members of the club involved. The girls acquire the basics of football and develop an enjoyment of the game in a “protected environment”. Separate girls’ football breaks in the school playground and class and school tournaments encourage the girls to join in. In this way, through the girls’ football working groups, it is possible to reach, inspire and involve girls with a migrant background. The parents accept the participation of their daughters in the football working group because the school a familiar place is for them. In addition to expanding their profiles with the inclusion of girls’ football programs, the schools also combine the hope of improving their extra-curricular range. With the cooperation of the school, the club aims to establish an attractive option for girls in order to attract new members and potential talent.
As we can see, Germany proved and showed by its good practices that there is a lot of initiatives can be created for inclusion of migrants into the local host society through sport, for bigger cross- and intercultural communication and unity.