Olympic Movement mobilises to support Ukrainian sport

21 Mar 2022
IOC News

Ever since the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian army, the entire Olympic Movement has rallied round to provide much-needed help to the Ukrainian Olympic community and sports movement.

Getty Images - Yaroslava Mahuchikh, winner of the Women's High Jump at the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Belgrade

National Olympic Committees (NOCs), Associations of National Olympic Committees, International Sports Federations (IFs) and International Olympic Committee (IOC) Members have come forward with offers of financial aid and logistical support.

This solidarity has been further amplified since the announcement by the IOC of the creation of a humanitarian fund and an initial USD 200,000 in aid for the most urgent initiatives.

In addition to earmarking the allocation of funds to the necessary efforts, a task force led by Olympic champion Sergii Bubka, President of the National Olympic Committee of Ukraine and an IOC Member, is coordinating the assistance being provided by other Olympic Movement constituents.

“I have been active within the Olympic Movement for a very long time, but to receive all these offers of support from so many is beyond anything we could have ever imagined. In his speech at the Closing Ceremony in Beijing, President Bach talked about his hope that the world could be inspired by the Olympic values of solidarity and peace. I now realise how clever our predecessors were when they defined these Olympic values,” Bubka said.

“They might seem vague at times, but I am seeing how they work in practice. The unity and speed of the Olympic community’s response to this crisis has been extraordinary. The sports movement in Ukraine is extremely grateful,” he added.

Below are some examples of the support programmes and initiatives that have already been implemented. The situation is constantly evolving, and other efforts are being finalised.

European Youth Olympic Winter Festival (EYOWF)

The European Olympic Committees have coordinated all aspects of the participation of a Ukrainian delegation of 48 members, including 26 young athletes, who have travelled to Finland to take part in the EYOWF in Vuokatti between 20 and 25 March. Several NOCs contributed to enable the team to reach Finland and be provided with uniforms, including Austria, Estonia, Poland, Italy and Finland.

Paralympic Winter Games Beijing 2022

The NOCs of Ukraine and Poland worked together on the safe return of the 54-member Ukrainian Paralympic team, whose performances in Beijing saw them win the second highest number of medals at the Games. The delegation travelled initially from Beijing to Warsaw, where their accommodation, living costs and onward travel were organised.

World Athletics Indoor Championships

The NOC of Romania took care of bringing a team of six Ukrainian track and field athletes and their coach across the border, which enabled them to participate in the World Athletics Indoor Championships in Belgrade, Serbia, from 18 to 20 March.

Ukrainian artistic swimming team

With support of the Italian NOC, the 19-strong Ukrainian artistic swimming team and their coach are currently based at a training camp in Italy.

Ukrainian moguls team

A team of five athletes and two coaches took part in the European Cup in Livigno, Italy, from 14 to 18 March.

NOC of Germany

The German NOC has set up an emergency aid fund and contributed an initial EUR 100,000 to help Ukrainian athletes. Direct support is provided through opportunities to train at a number of high-performance sports structures, and humanitarian support takes the form of collaboration with the NOC of Poland to send clothing, sports bags and trolleys from their uniform stocks to the Polish border region.  

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