Yesterday, my team and I won the junior basketball league of Montenegro. But I will not be writing about this wonderful feeling of winning, because it would be impossible to truly describe it.
I have been training in basketball for several years now and I am convinced that my active engagement with sports has had a big impact on my development.
Firstly, I have learned to respect both my opponents and myself. I have learned how to believe in myself, to accept any defeat with dignity and to never give up, by committing myself to correcting mistakes. It has taught me patience, because hard work eventually leads to success.
I remember that during our first season we were the worst-placed team in the league, but we were not discouraged. This same team became the best yesterday.
I had been dreaming about days like yesterday. I am so happy that I experienced it.
In addition to the sports activities that I am involved in, I have been participating in the media literacy campaign implemented by UNICEF and the Agency for Electronic Media of Montenegro for the past six months. A nationally representative survey was conducted in the context of the campaign, and to be honest, certain findings were devastating to me. The data in question motivated me to share my experiences with you:
One in two children in Montenegro did not attend any sporting event during the past year! The average child in Montenegro spends a total of eight hours in front of a screen!
Many parents criticize their children for the amount of time they spend in front of a screen, but they do not take any reasonable steps to change this practice.
Screen time must not replace time for involvement in sports, but it is hard to expect this to change if there is no one to take children to games.
Parents often do not support the idea of their children having too many extracurricular activities, fearing it could undermine their school attainment. In my opinion, this is a big mistake. Children need to learn how to be good at organizing activities and should never be deprived of the opportunity to express themselves. I am a holder of a Luča award for exceptional results at school, because, luckily, my parents understood this.
I would like to see another issue resolved as soon as possible. Namely, we can see that membership fees in Montenegrin sports clubs remain very high. It is necessary to make sports activities free of charge for all children in Montenegro, especially when it comes to state-owned sports clubs!
Those people who are in any way responsible for sports in Montenegro should understand that they are also responsible for the data from the mentioned research.
My message to everyone would be – sports for every child in Montenegro!
Danilo, 19, is a first-year student at the Faculty of International Economics, Finance and Business. His passion is sports, and he done basketball for a very long time. He is currently involved in coaching and administration at his club. In addition, he loves being involved in various activities and organizations and contributing to the community. He is a volunteer of the Red Cross of Montenegro and a regular voluntary blood donor. Winning an award at UPSHIFT, he created an outdoor classroom (FOROOM) in his school and thus contributed to its improvement. Danilo is a member of the first team of 'UNICEF Volunteers - Young Reporters' formed in 2018 within the media literacy campaign 'Let's Choose What We Watch'.