EHF supports growth of European handball with 6 million euro

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European Handball Federation

The European Handball Federation has taken the next step in its Master Plan to leverage the future growth of European handball.

Speaking at the 14th Extraordinary Congress in Vienna on Saturday, EHF President Michael Wiederer said that the European Handball Federation will invest 6 million euro through to 2025 as the federation seeks to realise its vision of being the ‘most attractive team sport and growing its community’.

"We have to secure the position of handball in the changing world of sports. We have to combine the unique elements of our sport - while keeping the core intact - with the evolution in several areas around us," Michael Wiederer said.

"We have to bring benefit to the life of people, then we will be able to develop our sport further." 

Member federations will be supported in their efforts to deliver the Master Plan through a new approach under the banner of ‘Embrace Handball’, which is clustered into four different programmes. Funding for federations will be granted for strategies and projects which contribute to the goals of the Master Plan.

The four programmes are: EHF 360º, SMART 2.0, short-term projects and EHF initiatives.

Within EHF 360º an analysis of a federation’s current situation and structure is conducted as the basis for a long-term development plan. Support is then given across the different areas of the Master Plan and so is mentoring through EHF and external experts. The first EHF 360ºprojects are set to begin in 2022.

Through SMART 2.0, an updated version of the existing support programme for national federations, funding will be given for projects that contribute to each federation’s long-term strategic plans. Applications from single federations as well as joint applications from multiple federations will be welcomed.

The criteria and priorities will be released in December 2021; the application process opens on 1 January.

To unfold the full potential of the Master Plan, and based on extensive consultation with the federation’s stakeholders and technical commissions, the European Handball Federation is also set to reveal a plethora of new projects in the coming months across all seven fields of development.

A reporting process will be put in place with federation surveys to be carried out every two years; the first one in early 2022. The first SMART 2.0 funded projects as well as the initial EHF Master Plan projects will be presented at the Conference for Secretaries General in March 2022 in Berlin, Germany.

The Master Plan for European Handball was first presented by Wiederer on the final weekend of the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 in Stockholm.

Its core are seven players with each standing for one particular field of development. These fields are 1. The Game; 2. Highlight Events; 3. Fan Appeal; 4. Grassroots Growth; 5. Strengthening Network; 6. Good Governance and 7. Commercial Success.

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