Representatives from the 42 clubs in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and 7DAYS EuroCup exchanged ideas on how to support local communities at the ninth One Team Annual Workshop, which took place in Barcelona on Thursday and Friday.
One Team, Euroleague Basketball's social responsibility program, brings together clubs from both competitions to deliver a unified program of social action all over the continent, helping thousands of vulnerable people every year.
The workshop allowed the clubs and Euroleague executives to reflect on the successes of the past and start to prepare an even more effective plan for the upcoming season, with the attendees also gaining valuable insights from external specialists who were invited as guest speakers.
The main focus of the workshop was the personal development of the people who deliver the programs at their clubs: One Team managers and coaches. They were invited to try new skills and share information and best practices, specifically addressing innovation, inspiration and personal growth.
The opening guest speakers on Friday were Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan and Virginia Bailey from Muslim Girls Fence, a collaboration between charity Maslaha and governing body British Fencing which aims to challenge misperceptions and raise aspirations among Muslim women, fighting against the complex discrimination experienced by this group on the basis of faith and gender.
The initiative and its objectives bear many similarities to some of the One Team programs carried out by Euroleague Basketball clubs, as Suhaiymah explained that the program "achieves social change through sport" and helps participants by allowing them to "increase their confidence and self-expression, breaking stereotypes and giving them a place to find themselves and shape their own lives."
Other special guests to share their expertise were Henry Glynn and Dan Lineker from The Change Foundation, Vanessa Greene from Chance to Shine, Mieke Stones from thinkBeyond, and Johnnie Garside from Everton Football Club.
The workshop also included on-court sessions, providing an opportunity for a group of experienced One Team managers and coaches – David Rivers from Tofas Bursa, Juste Ivaskeviciute and Antanas Usas (Zalgiris Kaunas), Michele Samaden and Marilisa Zanini (AX Armani Exchange Milan), and Michalina Maliszewska and Aleksandra Wojcik (Asseco Arka Gdynia) – to give guidance to newcomers to the program.
Participants in the program run by local team FC Barcelona and its Foundation were included in the sessions, and the workshop was also used to promote the message of #BEACTIVE in support of the European Week of Sport, which will take place in the last week of September.
Also on the packed agenda were the annual One Team Awards, which highlight the best work carried out by clubs over the last 12 months. Anadolu Efes Istanbul (gold award), Unicaja Malaga (silver) and Tofas Bursa (bronze) were the recipients of the prizes.
Roser Queralto, Euroleague Basketball Chief Business Development Officer, said: "The workshop was a very valuable exercise and will help our clubs make One Team even better in the future. One Team is a fantastic program which brings all 42 of our clubs together with the common aim of supporting local communities, and these two days were a great way to start preparing for next season's activities."
One Team, supported by Turkish Airlines as the One Team Founding Patron and with the collaboration of Special Olympics as Proud Partner, uses basketball to achieve meaningful social impact in our communities across Europe and is supported by every club in the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague and 7DAYS EuroCup.
Since its founding in 2012, the One Team program has already helped more than 19,000 participants through its various team-focused projects.