Zagreb, June 1, 2016 – The project SCORE (Strengthening Coaching with the Objective to Raise Equality / Advancing gender equality in sports training), in which the Croatian Olympic Committee (COC) is one of the partners, is entering its final phase. The second part of the Education for Mentors program, attended by the Croatian Olympic Committee’s representatives - Olympian and basketball coach Kornelija Kvesić, judo coach Željka Maranić and former athlete and athletics coach Tijana Pavičić - was held in Helsinki, from May 20 to May 22, 2016.

Twenty-two mentors from ten European sports organizations - partners in the project will be educated to support the potential female top-class coaches, with special emphasis on mentees’ professional and personal growth. The Helsinki mentor training was delivered by Satu Kaski, PhD and Sport Psychologist, with the focus on developing a strong network of female coaches, plans for supporting the female coaches and increasing their number.

After the completion of the training, the Croatian mentors will come up with – in coordination with the Croatian Olympic Committee – the way of introducing the mentoring system within their national sports federations, which will later be introduced in other sports as well.
The project SCORE will be carried out from January 2015 until the end of 2016 and it is co-financed from the Erasmus+ Sport funds, the largest EU program for education, training, youth and sports, for the period from 2014 to 2020. The leading partner is the European Non-Governmental Sports Organization (ENGSO). The objective of SCORE is to promote gender equality in the coaching profession, and it is aimed at increasing the number of of employed and volunteer female coaches – s at all levels of sports as well enhancing the knowledge on gender equality in coach education. The education for mentors is one of the measures for achieving this objective. The Croatian representatives – participants at the education - were selected by the Croatian Olympic Committee’s Gender Equality in Sport Commission.

The first phase of the project was dedicated to development of educational toolkits for raising awareness on gender equality among sports coaches and on the mentor education program. The toolkits are to be used by sports organizations for establishing a more gender equal environment and for facilitating the access of women into coaching, intended for women who are interested in coaching. The next step was the organization of national training sessions, where the participants are getting acquainted with the toolkits and taught on how to raise the awareness on gender equality among sports coaches in their own environment. One of such national training sessions was held in February 2016 by the Croatian Olympic Committee as part of the 14th annual conference "Physical conditioning of athletes 2016" at the Faculty of Kinesiology in Zagreb. The session was attended by the representatives of national sports federations, responsible for the profession and education of coaches and gender equality. After that, the national training sessions were held in April in Stockholm and in May in Helsinki. Three national training sessions are still to be held - in June in Germany and Portugal and in July in Lithuania.

The project results will be presented at the final conference to be held on October 13 and 14 in Cologne, which will be attended by the Coordinator of the Project in Croatia and Head of Development Programs in the Croatian Olympic Committee, Ms. Gordana Borko.
We should point out that SCORE was presented as an example of good practice at this year's EWS (European Women and Sport) Conference", held in Stockholm.