Where did Tiro en Braille come from?
The initiative originally did not have either a name or a concrete form. This is the case, because the project was conceived as an open-ended, non-predetermined university-based experience. The initiative, before having its name and a resulting sporting activity was thought as truly a ‘frontier’ study. Even before taking its current shape, it was based on three components
a teaching/learning component.
a practical sport component.
a research component. The second component centered on research. Undergraduate students were encouraged to publish in a collective book a chapter based on their proposal design as well as on their learning experience during the online seminar.
The combination of the three components gave the initiative unique unique character. Usually, SDP initiatives tend to have a top-down character in at least two ways:
The initiatives tend to be designed in the advanced Global North and then they are implemented in the Global South (of course this is a tendency and not an iron-law)
The initiatives tend to originate from ‘experts’, regardless of the North/South location of the experts.
What is the legal and/or institutional framework that supports Tiro en Braille?
Mexican-based legal/institutional framework
According to Muñiz (2015) sport has a relevant place within Mexican legislation because sport is a constitutional right since 2011. Sport and Physical Education are contained in articles 4 and 18 of the Mexican Constitution.
Additionally, since 2013 Mexico has a federal law on sport and physical culture -Ley General de Cultura Física y Deporte- (LGCFD). In Mexico the State is obliged to promote, foster, and stimulate sport participation.
Within the 2019-2024 National Development Plan (PND in Spanish), sport enjoys a central role. The PND states: “Universities, cultural halls, and sport centers will be built instead of jails. When facing the choice between coercion and consciousness development, the choice will be the latter” (Presidencia de la República, 2019: 33). Sport is also taken into account within the newly created National Health Institute for Welfare (INSABI). The PND gives sport a multidimensional character within the so-called 4T. Sport has three developmental strategies within the PND:
1) Public health
2) Sport for All
3) High performance sport and accountability
International (global) legal/institutional framework
In addition to its domestic legislation relevance, Muñiz (2015) observes that as a result of international instruments, such as CEDAW, Mexico has a series of obligations in terms of women’s sport participation.
The Mexican State also has obligations, resulting from its ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This convention is complemented by the General Law on the Inclusion of People with Disabilities. This federal law establishes that the Mexican Sports Commission (CONADE) is responsible for the promotion of the sport rights of people with disabilities. Additionally, the LGCFD guarantess equal opportunity and non-discrimination for people with disabilites and calls for the reconditioning of sport infrastructure to accommodate inclusiveness.
Mexico has a long-standing tradition of support and adherence to international law and international norms. As a result of this tradition, Mexico has championed the causes of the 2030 Agenda and its resulting 17 SDG.
The initiative, since its very conception, has had four chief objectives:
Objective 1. To contribute to the fulfillment of the SDG in general, and to 12 of its 169 specific targets.
Objective 2. To facilitate the recovery, the revival, the preservation, the growth, and the projection of Pre-Columbian games. This initiative is supported by the Ley General de Cultura Física y Deporte (LGCFD), as well as on SDG specific goal 4.7, as Mexico has deep indigenous roots.
Objective 3. To inspire the resulting sporting activity in the adoption and adaptation of inclusive and/or open-ended methodologies, such as Ultimate Frisbee (Griggs, 2011), and the recent adaptations of the F3H methodology (Segura et al., 2018).
Objective 4. To guarantee that the resulting sporting activity is not likely to be captured and commodified by sponsors whose goals are self-serving. Indeed, the main contribution is not the sporting activity per se, but the underlying philosophy and methodology of the project. This initiative allows practically infinite scaling up when replicated in the Global South as well as in the Global North.
The call for proposals that gave birth to Tiro en Braille
The second component of the ‘frontier initiative’ was the design of a practical sporting activity. A call for proposals on the design of a sporting activity was launched in early August 2019. The call was designed bearing in mind 12 of the 169 targets of the SDG: 3.4, 4.5, 4.8, 5.1, 5.5, 5.c, 9.b, 10.2, 10.3, 11.4, 16.7, and 17.7. It also took into account the Mexican Constitution and the LGCFD. The call had specific requirements:
1) At least half of the persons of a team must be women
2) At least two members per team must enroll in the online seminar
3) Each team needed to have an academic tutor
4) Proposals must guarantee that the sporting activity would be suitable to be played by people with disabilities, shall they wanted to take part
5) The activity ought to be inspired by a Pre-Columbian game/sport
6) Proposals shall align to the greatest possible extent to at least 3 legislations and/or agendas –The 2019-2024 PND, the LGCFD, Guanajuato state’s sports law, the municipal sport’s rules, and mandatorily to the SDG
7) All playing devices and or field’s signage must be made with recyclable materials with the express prohibition of using fossil energies
8) The design shall respond/align to the greatest possible numberof SDG
9) The resulting activity shall be inspired in a progressive, inclusive, participatory methodology, e.g, Ultimate Frisbee (Griggs, 2011) and/or F3H (Segura, Norman, and Jaccoud, 2018), as it was implemented during the Lyon 2016 festival under the modality of trascending the national teams and gender-specific competitions
10) Each proposal must be accompanied by a letter of intention from at least one Guanajuato City-based Pyme (small and mid-size enterprise) sponsor
11) The proposal shall incorporate the contents of the online seminar. The sporting proposals would be evaluated by a committee composed of two professors, two authorities, and two outstanding students.
The evaluation rubric considered:
The originality of the proposal
Low physical/psycological risk for participants
The sustainability of the game’s inputs
A letter of intent of a local sponsor
The theoretical-methodological quality
The sport objectives themselves
The potential to rationally comply with the greatest possible number of SDG
The performance and commitment on the online seminar
The completion of a diagnosis/progress questionnaire (at the beginning of the semester and a week before the evaluation of the proposals by team members)
The congruency level between the proposals and the legislation/institutional agendas.
The awards ceremony was scheduled for November 25, 2020. All teams will have the possibility to publish their proposals in the collective book. All teams were required to sign a letter of intent, expressing their willingness to play the winning proposal during the January-June 2020 semester.