Time for a national dialogue on sport

Participation in sport leaves a country generally healthier than one without such activities. The growth of sport into one of the fastest growing areas of business in today’s world has meant great economic benefits for many nations. There is the obvious sports tourism option which has brought large revenues to countries
around the world that have taken the plunge through a truly professional approach.
The sea of red that flooded the Hasely Crawford Stadium in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago in the lead up to the World Cup 2006 reflected just how much of a sense of national pride the team’s success generated. The nation, regardless of creed, race or class came together as one. There was one area of national focus – getting to the Football World Cup. For that period all divisive tendencies were cast aside not to be mentioned.
Additionally, sport enhances the international reputation of a country whose sportsmen and women fare well. No one would deny the impact that getting to the Football World Cup has had on the international reputations of Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago. The same can be said of the impact of the successes of both countries, Cuba and more recently St Kitts/Nevis and Grenada as a result of the performances of their athletes at World Championships in Athletics and the quadrennial Summer Olympics.

Sports Forum
There seems an aversion to establishing a non political forum for sport at a national level and which involves all of the stakeholders.
The NSC does not meet with sponsors alongside national sports associations to arrive at some reasonable approach to sports development.
It is clear from what obtains currently that the NSC is unclear of its role in national sports development. It may therefore be most opportune for that organisation to revisit its original mandate.