On the 8th of August, close to 4000 young athletes from around the world came together to participate in sport, culture and an educational event. The event demonstrated a celebration of the Olympic values and the beauty of life. There was the inclusion of the Olympism in Action forum, organized by the International Olympic Committee which brought together the Olympic movement stakeholders and civil society to share experiences, inspiring stories, challenging questions, intricate dialogues and above all to discuss how sports can create positive change around the world. Sport has so many stories, it creates hope, sport can make a difference and Olympic humanity is key.
The SportAccord Convention in Bangkok was deemed a big success, with special social initiatives for displaced and for children with different abilities. Two of the children through an incentive program made their dreams come true and earnt the chance to be a part of the Youth Olympic experience. In addition to their attendance and participation, was the inclusion of Thailand’s Wild Boar Team who became one of the most known football teams in the world this year. The 12 boys and their coach had been trapped deep inside a cave for over two weeks and against all odds, through their unified spirit and an international effort, they all survived. The Wild Boar team came together with the Thai children showcasing bravery, and that just as importantly, when the world unites for the right reasons anything is possible. These Thai children came together to inspire others and the event was appropriately named “kids help kids” where the team delivered a message of hope and strength to the youth of Argentina. The two children from the incentive program demonstrated a beautiful and dynamic Muaythai performance for the audience of youth and all the sporting delegates present.
Many from the Olympic and GAISF family came to support, the CEO of the World Games, President of Jujitsu many ARISF and AIMS members and certainly the late president of SportAccord and GAISF Patrick Baumann, which despite having had a high-level invitation on that evening to another event, chose to inspire the youth not only with his presence but with an emotional speech for those present. It was to be the last time they would see the former president but there is no doubt they will remember him forever.
The late president also received an honorary Ajarn certificate and uniform from IFMA for his services in the world of sport and humanity. Over 1300 kg of goods, foods and hygienic equipment were raised that night and distributed to the street children and those which are less fortunate.
The event was organized by United Through Sports, IFMA and the Argentinan Muaythai Federation. The evening served to remind us all again about our responsibilities, duties and our belief in the power of sports.