Members of the National Olympic Committee here will receive additional funding support from their parent body come 2013 through 2016.
Word of this has come from the 3rd Vice President of the Pan American Sports Organisation (PASO), Keith Joseph, following his return from the recent executive meeting of the continental arm of the International Olympic Committee in Miami, Florida.
According to Joseph, the success of the London 2012 Olympics allowed Olympic Solidarity, the development arm of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), to allocate additional resources to each continental organisation as well as to each NOC.
In this regard, PASO, under which St Vincent and the Grenadines falls, will provide more funds to the NOCs of the area to aid in their preparation, participation and performance at the Pan American Games of 2015 in Toronto, Canada, and the Olympic Games of 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
According to Joseph, all of the monies allocated to PASO by Olympic Solidarity will go directly to the NOCs of the area to ensure adequate preparation for the aforementioned activities. Member NOCs will each be required to provide Olympic Solidarity with four-year strategic plans in relation to haw their respective members will use the funds to prepare their athletes to compete in the qualifying competitions.
Additionally, Joseph stated, PASO will use its own resources garnered from the Pan Am Games in Guadalajara, to offer three athletes per NOC scholarships, each of no more than two months duration, to train at a High Performance Centre within the region, in order to be better prepared for the Pan Am and Olympic Games. Unfortunately these scholarships are for individuals and not teams.
Joseph also declared that the various Commissions of PASO would also receive, for the first time in the organisation’s history, funding to aid in their developmental work.
Joseph, who is also General Secretary of the St Vincent and the Grenadines NOC, stated that the several programmes from Olympic Solidarity in Lausanne, Switzerland, will continue and with expanded resources being made available to each NOC.
The next four years will see all of the sports on the Olympic programmes benefitting significantly more in terms of accessing funds for their preparatory work, Joseph said.
But, he noted, without strategic plans and without success at different preparatory competitions national associations would only allow the NOC to draw down limited resources instead of what should be fully available.
It is not a fait acompli. Joseph concluded. We have to collectively work very hard to attain success.
Joseph also noted that the increased funding allows national associations to break their dependency on government funding which has not always been forthcoming for participating in regional and international qualifying competitions.
St Vincent and the Grenadines was able to ensure full participation in all of the qualifying competitions in which national associations agreed to compete for the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico in 2010, the Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico in 2011 and the Olympic Games in London, UK, earlier this year.