South and Central America laying the groundwork for future prosperity

08 May. 2021

South and Central America laying the groundwork for future prosperity

The ‘1st Technical Congress’ of the South and Central America Handball Confederation (SCAHC), also known in Spanish as the Confederación Sur y Centro Americana de Handball (COSCABAL), completed last month with four days (19-22 April) of presentations and discussions relating to a broad range of aspects within handball.

“We established a number of key elements to run throughout the Technical Congress including ‘Building Trust in the SCAHC’ and ‘Competence and Training/Development’, but it was also key to reach not only the presidents of our 19 member federations but a much wider audience through a diverse range of collaborators,” said Marcel Mancilla, President of the SCAHC, to

“19 different countries meant different interests, different levels of professionalism and different levels of participation or involvement so we worked closely with their staff to inform and take their opinions.”

Mancilla opened the congress himself, thanking all who had worked hard to not only organise the event but to improve communication within the Continental Confederation, before acknowledging the current difficulties caused by COVID-19 within the continent and praising the support of the IHF.

“No one can deny that the pandemic has given us great blows of all kinds but one of the good things that is leaving us is this ability to communicate over great distances and between several continents without the need to move physically,” said Mancilla in his opening address.

“From the first day I informed IHF President Dr Hassan Moustafa that this event would take place, the entire structure of the IHF was made available to us, allowing us to count on the inputs, words and messages of the Chairs of the IHF Commissions and we appreciate their help, support and presence.”

President Moustafa then addressed those gathered, reiterating that the unity of working together is key to continuing development in the region.

Sessions then followed with hundreds of people either viewing live on Zoom or YouTube with all sessions interactive, allowing for questions to be asked and answered in both Spanish and English.

To read about the specific sessions and guest speakers, visit here.

One of the most open and talked about sessions was the ‘Women and Handball’ roundtable with three key elements highlighted, including ‘Inclusion, Exclusion and Discrimination’, ‘Self Criticism (No Problems = No Action)’ and ‘Action’ (not just talking). The SCAHC also announced the launch of a research project relating to the teaching of school handball and women across the continental federation’s region.

“We are in a time of change, we have the need and the capacity to generate change, changes that are real and active in sports,” said lawyer Maria Loreto Gonzalez, an expert in sport and women’s issues who also works for the Chilean National Olympic Committee, during the roundtable.

“We have this pandemic which allows us to communicate through digital means and we need to take advantage of this, to make something positive out of what is happening.”

The SCAHC Competition Commission also announced their plans for greater participation, while the SCAHC Playing Rules and Referees Commission revealed their mentoring and training programmes for referees, and asked member countries to create their own 2021-2024 referee programmes.

In other big news coming from the SCAHC, their Beach Handball Commission revealed plans for a new ‘SCAHC Beach Handball Circuit’ and the Wheelchair Handball Commission discussed the possibilities of hosting an event in the region in the future, while also discussing their plans and programmes for the development of the sport, too.

After four days of intense discussion and sharing of plans and ideas, the Congress closed with the Working Group of the Committee of Athletes expressing their hopes to be present at all future championships and Mancilla thanking everyone for their valuable input and positivity over the week. The 766 Zoom participants and more than 1,701 views on YouTube over the four days shows the objectives of informing and communicating being fulfilled within the SCAHC.

The 1st SCAHC Technical Congress followed their ‘International Handball Seminar’, which was held exactly one year ago.

For more information on the SCAHC visit