The designation World Leisure Community of Excellence is bestowed by the World Leisure Organization (WLO) upon communities that have successfully used Leisure in its widest forms to reinvent themselves and to improve the economic, social and cultural lives of their citizens, and that have made substantive contributions consistent with advancing the mission of WLO. In so doing, WLO brings global attention to the excellence those communities have achieved through working together as citizens to promote leisure as a means to enhance the human condition.
Open Call for Applications
Recipients can be communities of any size that have undertaken broad-based citizen involvement to promote leisure as integral to the social, cultural, economic, and sustainable environmental development of the community. Designation as a World Leisure Community of Excellence can be bestowed upon a neighborhood, village, town, city, state or region whose citizens have worked together as a community.
Applications are sought from broad-based citizen coalitions that may include practicing professionals, academicians and researchers, policy makers and officials, community lay leaders, students, and other interested individuals who have undertaken an innovative and effective program that has enhanced the well-being of targeted members of their community.
Although not an exhaustive list, examples of effective policies and programs include successful efforts to:
- Create policies, implement programs, or develop facilities that ensure access for persons with a disability (e.g. physical, mental, or communication, as well as those disadvantaged due to sex, age, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, marital status, and the like) to take advantage of the full range of leisure services available in the community.
- Focus advocacy activities on creating and disseminating policy statements, model legislative acts, educational materials, or consultative services that advance leisure as a human right in order to enhance the quality of life for all persons.
- Establish development goals through broad-based community engagement aimed at creating policies, projects, programs, or initiatives for sustainable development.
- Establish partnerships among key inter-governmental bodies, affiliated professional organizations, and leisure associations that advance leisure as a means to enhance the human condition.
- Pilot cultural life-long learning programs for older adults.
- Target community health efforts that promote child and family well-being through leisure.
- Improve public transportation to enable all citizens´ to have ready and convenient access to key services and leisure facilities.
- Create/improve natural environments that support young people’s learning, activity, or health.
- Expand the use of technology (e.g., social media, assistive technologies, computer-based instruction, communications, event marketing) to promote leisure and improve access to leisure activities for all citizens.
- Create effective informational products and services that have promoted leisure to targeted audiences and expanded knowledge of and access to the full range of leisure resources in the community.
Once selected, the World Leisure Organization promotes the World Leisure Community of Excellence as exemplifying the best in leisure policies and programs and advocates for their wider implementation. The roster of World Leisure Communities of Excellence is expected to serve as a platform for sharing these best practices as well as to serve as a source of inspiration to communities interested in promoting leisure as a human right for all its citizens. Learning more about effective leisure practices with proven success across abroad variety of activities in different geographical regions will help concerned parties to develop their own projects to promote leisure as a means to enhance the human condition.
Through designation as a World Leisure of Community Excellence, a community can expect to:
- Gain global recognition for its innovative use of leisure practices to strengthen economic, social, cultural, and environmental development
- Showcase its achievements at the international level
- Join an international network of leisure communities interested in sharing their innovative and revitalizing programs and strategies
- Attract tourism and investment
- Build a global reputation as a leading community in the leisure field
The World Leisure of Community Excellence designation is valid for a three–years period. Continued use of the designation will be subject to a review.
The designed communities will be given the opportunity to join the World Leisure of Community Excellence Network (annual fee required). This network aims to strengthen cooperation with and among communities that have successfully used leisure in its widest forms to reinvent themselves and to improve the economic, social and cultural lives of their citizens. By joining the Network, communities will strengthen international cooperation, broaden their opportunities and benefit from the networking and the exchange among the WLO programmes.
See full information document here: 2018 World Leisure Community of Excellence – Call for Applications