Croatian Community Revealed Through Sport

croatian community

Behere Member Chronicles by Michelle Barker

A piece by Boris Starling passed through my social media feed. A piece which poignantly creates the backstory of this team and young people in this country, and even the country itself. This is a beautiful place with some of the most persevering people I’ve ever encountered. Young men, growing up with war as one of their earliest memories, turned to sport to challenge the status quo, to showcase their talents, and put their country front and center on the world stage.
The community rallied behind these young men, their support was evident during each game after the final game and a second place finish, and when the players returned to their communities. The community was invested in this sport, in the game; it was part of their lifestyle.
It was a once in a lifetime experience to be part of the World Cup audience in Croatia and follow their success as a team and growth and development as a country. Sport is something we as humans can rally around, regardless of our political leanings, position in society, and language.
Intentional design of our communities to include sport and recreation builds our capacity to set aside differences and celebrate success. Mindfully planning for the intersection of sport and everyday life, allowing business owners, citizens, and elected officials to be part of the story, creates a true community. Simply walk through the cities of Croatia wearing your team gear and you’ll learn this very quickly.
Originally posted by Michelle here.

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