The International Olympic Committee (IOC) executive board this week agreed to increase the budget of Olympic Solidarity for the period 2021 to 2024 by 16%. The new budget will total $590 million (R9.1 billion).
With this decision, the IOC will further strengthen its support to athletes, national Olympic committees and continental associations.
IOC president Thomas Bach said: “One important lesson that I hope we have all learnt from the current Covid-19 crisis is that we need more solidarity. We need more solidarity within societies, but also among societies. Solidarity is one of the key Olympic values that the Olympic community is actively promoting.
The decision to increase the budget of our Olympic Solidarity programme for the next four-year cycle by 16% to $590 million is a very strong demonstration in times of a worldwide crisis.
“At 25%, the increase in the funding of direct athlete support programmes is even higher than the overall increase. Additionally, the athletes as members of the Olympic teams will benefit from the 25% increase for national Olympic committees. The IOC continues to help all national Olympic committees, particularly those with the greatest needs and the IOC Refugee Olympic Team, through a wide range of programmes prioritising athletes’ development, and the training and education of their entourage.”
Chairperson of the Olympic Solidarity Commission Robin Mitchell said the new plan was fit for purpose in the post-Covid-19 pandemic world.
It means all funding and programmes will go as a priority to the beneficiaries, the athletes and the national Olympic committees.
It was also pointed out during the meeting that the decentralisation of a portion of the funds to the continental associations should be reinforced to develop sustained programmes responding to continental specificities.
To that end, the budget allocated to each national Olympic committee for its national activities has been increased to the equivalent of $500 000 per national Olympic committee per Olympiad, and continent-specific programme budgets have been increased by 24%. – Olympic.org