A few months after the World Conference on Sport and Environment held in Vancouver, some National Olympic Committees of Oceania met last weekend in Apia (Samoa), to share knowledge and experience while analysing and identifying related measures/strategies about sustainable development. Organised jointly by the IOC, through its Sport and Environment Commission, and the Samoan NOC, this Continental Seminar saw the participation of delegates from 14 NOCs, welcomed by the Prime Minister of Samoa, Tuilaepa Lupesoliali Sailele Malielegaoi, NOC Samoa President, Vui Tapasu Leung Wai, and the Secretary General, Niko Palamo.
From NOCs’ actions to youth involvement
This seminar covered all the key areas concerning sustainable development of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in sport, from finding solutions to meeting environmental challenges, to examples of NOC programmes and actions for sport and the environment, and the role of young people and sponsors and their involvement in sustainable development. The delegates also learned about the Sustainable Sport and Event Toolkit (SSET), a joint initiative by the International Academy of Sports Science and Technology (AISTS) and the Vancouver Organising Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) and for whom the IOC is the Principal Supporting Partner. This guide provides a practical way to create a sustainable commitment and strategy around environmental, social and economic issues.
The Apia seminar concluded with a list of concrete commitments for future action as well as partnerships on developing sustainable efforts. This list addresses current challenges in this field and appeals to the various stakeholders involved, such as sports and community based organisations, traditional leaders, sponsors, government and public authorities, to promote sustainable development through sport. The participants also recommended seeking the establishment of an ONOC Sport and Environment Commission, and working with that Commission across the region. The document serves as an action plan and ensures that the fruitful discussions of the two-day meeting will be followed up.
Copyright Speakers Corner 2016