August 10, 2022
Olympic Solidarity and International Federations launch joint program to support high-performing women coaches

Building on the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) long-standing commitment to advancing gender equality and inclusion, and in particular helping more women reach leadership positions, Olympic Solidarity And several International Federations (IFs) have launched a new mentorship and training program to help women coaches progress into high-performing coaching roles in national, continental and international competitions, including major events such as the Olympic Games.

While Tokyo 2020 broke new ground as the most gender-balanced Olympic Games ever with 48 percent female participation, there is still a long way to go towards gender equality when it comes to female coaches and officials . In the past decade, only 10 percent of accredited trainers at the Olympic Summer and Winter Games have been women. Preliminary figures show that modest progress was made in Tokyo with 13 percent female coaches; Although this figure is very less.

International Olympic Committee

International Olympic Committee

To address the situation, the IOC has launched several initiatives, working with international union (IF), National Olympic Committees (NOC) and organizing committees to open more coaching and substitute avenues for women.

Women in Sports High Performance PathAlso known as the Wish programme, has been developed in coordination with a team of experts based at the University of Hertfordshire in the UK, with the aim of supporting women coaches who have already helped achieve key roles. Has demonstrated ability and ambition to succeed. The highest level of their game.

USD 1 million funding provided by Olympic Solidarity

The program supports the implementation of the IOC’s gender equality and inclusion objectives for 2021–2024, and in particular its commitment to the acceleration of the representation of women in sporting leadership roles.

Olympic Solidarity Wish is investing USD 1 million in the programme, and will run four groups during the current quadrennial, benefiting approximately 100 coaches. The 21-month program will provide participants with leadership training, sport-specific training and mentorship in the leadership of their IFs, and engagement with National Olympic Committees (NOCs).

The first group of 20 NOCs and 22 coaches from seven sports (bobsley/skeleton, cycling, judo, rugby, ski, volleyball and wrestling) began their online training on 23 May with a residential week in the UK scheduled for August. Those wishing to participate in subsequent intakes are encouraged to apply through their IFs, and many IFs are already in touch with the application process for the next fellows. Candidates need the support of both IF and NOC to be accepted into the program.

successful pilot program

The launch of the Wish program follows the success of a pilot initiative supported by the IOC, the Women’s Sports Leadership Academy (WSLA HPC), which ran from 2019 to 2021 and provided 26 women from 23 NOCs and six sports (cycling, rowing, rugby). saw. , tennis, triathlon and wrestling).

Among them was Pamela Fulton, a triathlon coach from Zimbabwe who is now advising not only up-and-coming athletes, but also coaches and other women in the sport.

“WSLA, for me, was a real life-changer,” she says. “It was an incredible experience that really helped me grow in confidence, and it also helped me think about what my goals were. It really made me sit back and think, ‘What do I really need?’ And then figure out the way to get there.”

For Fulton, that goal is to train an athlete in the Olympic Games. “That would be my dream,” she says. “I’ve been to the Youth Olympic Games, and was very lucky to do so, but obviously everyone wants to go to the Olympics. It’s difficult because most athletes don’t stay in Zimbabwe after going to university or college, so I Have always thought, ‘It’s not possible.’ But what the WSLA has taught me is not to give up.”

For Fulton, one of the key aspects of the program was the inspiration she felt from working with other participants and seeing what they have achieved, coaching, team or technical executives at Tokyo 2020, her three contemporary Olympic Games. are participating in. roles, while 15 are now in national coaching positions and two are coaching men’s professional teams. In addition, eight of the participants are providing education and mentoring to support the development of other women’s coaches.

“I felt like you always had the support of other women,” Fulton says. “We were all in the same situation; All we wanted to do was try and do the best for our own federations and our athletes. To find out what some of the other women are up to, it makes you think, ‘Okay, I need to get more inspired and get out there. If they can do it, I can do that.’ It makes you think out-of-the-box about what else you can do and achieve.”

Through her participation in the program, Fulton now hopes she can provide similar inspiration to other female coaches. “I really hope I can inspire some other women to just go and achieve what they want to do,” she says. “The sky’s the limit, and I don’t want anyone else to think, ‘I can’t do this because I’m a woman.’ If you want it, go for it.”

And thanks to the launch of the VISH program, more women coaches will now have the opportunity to fulfill their dreams.

Olympic Solidarity: Supporting Athletes and the Development of Sport

with Olympic SolidarityThe aim of the IOC is to provide assistance to all NOCs around the world, especially those in greatest need.

This is achieved through assistance multidisciplinary program – Including the Wish program – prioritizing athlete development, but training for coaches and sports administrators, and promoting Olympic values.

The Olympic Solidarity Development and Aid budget for the 2021–2024 plan totals US$590 million, corresponding to the share of broadcast rights for the Olympic Games (Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022), which belongs to the NOC. Olympic Solidarity redistributes these funds Through programs provided to all NOCs recognized by the IOC.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.