This toolkit is a gateway to “Sport for Development”. You will find information, guidelines, manuals, tools and advice on how to implement projects using the “Sport for Development” approach. In the following you will find answers to questions like: How can I use the toolkit? Which target groups does it appeal to? How can sport contribute to the SDGs? What kind of competences can children and youth, coaches and multipliers acquire? How can we evaluate the outcome of S4D projects?

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The Toolkit provides resources in theory and practice that can assist the user to promote the application of sport as a tool to achieve development goals, to improve his/her knowledge and practice of S4D, and to encourage him/her to run S4D projects and activities.

The Toolkit is relevant for development experts and practicioners as well as anyone with an interest in sport and development theory and practice.

This toolkit aims to provide access to tools, material and resources that have been developed and/or used by GIZ and partners and have been proved as successful. The reader is invited to adapt the material for his/her own needs, considering that this toolkit wants to assist, advice and guide the user, but shouldn’t be understood as providing ‘one-size-fits-all’ material. The user is therefore asked to consider the information provided from a critical point-of-view regarding his/her work.

The toolkit is structured into FOUR sections:

(1) The S4D Essentials give you a general idea on

  • How can sport contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?
  • What does Capacity Development (CD) mean in the field of S4D?
  • Which S4D Competences can be gained on different levels?
  • Which Partners and Networks are involved in S4D?
  • What kind of Teaching and Learning Materials do exist?
  • What kind of role does Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) play in the field of S4D? 
  • Which resources are provided, if you want to go deeper into the subject matter?

For each subsection, there are additional resources available that invite you to go further into the topic.

(2) The S4D Topic Collection provides recommendations and practical examples on how sport can be used to achieve certain development goals and how it can be used in different contexts. Every topic starts with an introduction into the specific topic or context. Depending on the topic, you will find competency frameworks for children and youth as well as for coaches. Developed for projects in different regions and contexts, the S4D Topic Collection gives you an idea of capacity development, events, of teaching and learning materials and of M&E tools.

(3) In the S4D Country Collection, you will find all the different GIZ supported S4D programs and projects, sorted by country. The collection offers:

  • short project descriptions about the S4D approach developed in the country,
  • developed Teaching and Learning Materials,
  • information on Capacity Development (CD) procedures and workshops in the country,
  • a range of M&E tools that have been used in the country, as well as
  • further radings about S4D in the country 

(4) In the section S4D Tools for your Practice you will find useful tools for incorporating S4D into your work. All the tools address both new and experienced practitioners of S4D. Through the provided Teaching and Learning Materials you get final insights and inspiration. The Guidelines, M&E Tools and Templates are divided into different sections and can be chosen based off the tasks, working areas, or phases you are involved or you need support in.

The toolkit contains a range of tools:

  • Teaching and Learning Materials comprise any kind of didactical material, such as handbooks, manuals, and curricula to be used by any practitioner (coaches, teachers, social workers, etc.) who wants to implement S4D in formal or informal education settings. Additionally, the material outlines numerous practical S4D activities with helpful recommendations to promote S4D competences.
  • Guidelines include information on how to organize and structure certain processes and/or activities in the working area of S4D, such as the structure of a training session/of Physical Education (PE) classes, the function of coaches/teachers as role models, as well as the development phases of children and youth.
  • M&E Tools are tools that allow to measure and understand outputs and outcomes of certain S4D processes and/or activities.
  • Templates are blank forms that can be adapted and used to simplify working processes in S4D.
  • Publications are part of the section “Further Readings” and contain factsheets, brochures, articles etc. These documents, which give more in-depths insights about a certain topic or country.

Sport for Development (S4D) refers to the intentional use of sport, physical activity and play to attain specific development objectives, including, most notably, the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The approach is based on the conviction that sport-based initiatives can be powerful, practical and cost effective instruments for achieving development objectives, such as good health and well-being, quality education and gender equality. Sport for this purpose includes all forms of physical activity that contribute to physical and mental well-being and social interaction, such as play, recreation, organized or competitive sport, and indigenous sports and games. [1]

On the contrary, “Development of Sport” or sport development focuses on the development of all sports, a specific sport code or sport type as well as the development of sport federations. It typically contains high performance sport; the social aspect of sport is, if at all, a secondary priority.

[1] Our definition contains parts of the following documents: Sport, Recreation and Play (UNICEF, 2004, S. 1); Harnessing the Power of Sport for Development and Peace (SDPIEG, 2008, S. 1); Transforming our World, Agenda 2030 (UN A/RES/70/1, Art. 37); Sport for Development and Peace, Towards achieving the MDGs (UN, 2003, p. 5); What is Sport for Development and Peace (RTP, p. 1); Introduction to Sport for Development and Peace (p. 3); 

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (or simply the Global Goals) are a collection of 17 global goals set by the UN in 2015. They are part of Resolution 70/1 of the United Nations General Assembly"Transforming our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development" (in short "2030 Agenda”). The SDGs are unique because they apply to all countries worldwide. They call for action to end all forms of poverty and to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. The SDGs cover social and economic development issues including health, education, gender equality, environment, urbanization, water, energy, and social justice.

Within the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development A/RES/70/1, sport is highlighted as an important enabler of sustainable development: It is attributed to be a means to teach tolerance and respect and to contribute to the empowerment of women, young people, individuals and communities as well as to health, education and social inclusion objectives. For example, the potential contribution of sport toward ‘gender equality’ is promoting female leaders and roles models or raising awareness on gender issues. More detailed application examples you will find in the S4D Essentials


The target groups for S4D programmes can be divided in to three parts:

  1. The first part are stakeholders, politicians who are possible supporters and partners for S4D programmes and/or actors who have not been involved in S4D before. 
  2. The second part of the target group consists of people who like to become multipliers (trainers, coaches, social workers etc.) within the S4D field. They receive trainings, in which they learn how to teach S4D activities to the children and youth (S4D trainer) as well as how to teach others to become trainers themselves (S4D instructor).
  3. The third part of the target group is made of the final recipients of the sport programmes, that are children and youth; particularly those from regions affected by poverty. These young people often have to cope with additional disadvantages arising from the social, political and cultural circumstances in their home countries. Girls and young women receive special consideration, since there is a lack of projects geared to their needs and often they have only limited access to educational and social programmes.

Capacity development (CD) is a core task of development cooperation. German development cooperation understands CD as the development of the capabilities of people, organisations and societies to manage resources effectively and efficiently in order to realise their own goals on a sustainable basis.

CD in S4D on individual level is about the qualification of S4D instructors and coaches; on organizational level it means the integration of S4D into current structures, processes and programmes of organisations. In the context of CD in S4D on societal level, networks are established, developed, steered and strengthened by bringing together actors from different fields (e.g. ministries, NGOs, sport federations etc.). In terms of system development in the policy field, the embedding of S4D in policy papers, strategies, and action plans, as well as budgeting of umbrella organisations, ministries or national agencies is the aim and objective.

A S4D instructor is someone who teaches other coaches or individuals in the S4D approach and method. They are trained in workshops for instructors or take part in the delivery of S4D workshops for coaches.

A S4D coach is a person involved in the direction, instruction, training and operations of a sports team or Physical Education class (children and youth) and delivers S4D activities. They are trained in workshops for coaches. A coach can be a trainer of a club, a teacher, social worker, leader or any other profession. Coaches are also responsible for promoting social change through the medium of sport.

For more information, have a look in our chapter about Capacity Development on Individual Level. Here you will get more insights into the qualification processes of S4D instructors and S4D coaches.  

Regarding to S4D, several terms (life skills, competences/competencies and abilities) are used in different contexts. We decided to work with the term competences having its origin in pedagogy and psychology:

“Competences are pedagogic skills that can be learned, cognitively anchored and therefore are knowledge-based skills and abilities that aim to accomplish successfully tasks and requirements in everyday and professional situations.”

In the S4D context, we talk about competences on different levels: To comprise the entire range of competences people can gain in the field of S4D, we developed clusters of S4D competences for children and youth as well as for coaches and instructors. The S4D competences include self, social, methodological/strategic and professional competences related to sport and related to specific S4D Topics.

Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) is an essential part of the cycle of a S4D programme and part of all activities on the ground. In general, monitoring is integral to evaluation. During an evaluation, information from previous monitoring processes is used to understand the ways in which the project or programme developed and stimulated change. Monitoring focuses on the measurement of the following aspects of an intervention:

  • On quantity and quality of the implemented activities (outputs: What do we do? How do we manage our activities?)
  • On processes inherent to a project or programme (outcomes: What were the effects /changes that occurred as a result of your intervention?)
  • On processes external to an intervention (impact: Which broader, long-term effects were triggered by the implemented activities in combination with other environmental factors?)

The evaluation process is an analysis or interpretation of the collected data which delves deeper into the relationships between the results of the project/programme, the effects produced by the project/programme and the overall impact of the project/programme.

In the S4D Essentials section you will find more information about M&E in the field of S4D.

In the S4D Topic Collection  and the S4D Country Collection you will find exemplarily M&E tools, which are used in our programmes and projects in different countries and contexts.

The S4D Tools for your Practice include several research tools for your own practice.