The IOC Athletes’ Commission Strategy has paved the way towards greater athlete representation in Olympic Movement decision-making processes, highlighted by the fact that the Commission will welcome a record number of participants to next month’s International Athletes’ Forum

  • Ahead of the 2019 Athlete365 International Forum, we look at how the IOC Athletes’ Commission Strategy has opened the door to increased funding and support for athlete representatives
  • As a result, the global network of athletes’ commissions has grown and become better connected, demonstrated in the 300+ attendance at the 2019 Forum
  • In the build-up to the Forum, Athlete365 will be providing content and case studies that showcase the importance of the athletes’ voice.

At next month’s Athlete365 International Forum there will be more than 300 participants – around triple the number from 2017 – demonstrating how the IOC Athletes’ Commission Strategy has opened the door to increased funding for athletes, stimulating the growth of this global network of athlete representatives.

This year, for the first time, representatives from each National Olympic Committee (NOC) have been invited to share their voice at the Forum, making this the biggest-ever athlete gathering of its kind.

A stronger, more connected global network

The global network of athletes’ commissions (ACs) has become infinitely stronger and more united since the 2017 Forum, with ACs able to access more online resources through Athlete365 to empower them in becoming effective. These include a guide to developing an effective AC, a guide to holding an AC election, and a number of templates to use in meetings.

In addition, there has been increased peer-to-peer communication through regular global AC network calls, and a number of additional cross-commission calls. The IOC AC remains the only athlete body with the resources to pull together the global community of representatives into a meeting or a conference call in response to key issues.

Greater funding to support face-to-face interaction

Thanks to a close working relationship with Olympic Solidarity and in line with the demands of the IOC AC Strategy, a new format of Continental Forums were launched since the 2017 Forum, creating a tangible link between the IOC AC and ACs around the world.

Last year in Harare, Miami and Tokyo, these forums provided an open and interactive platform for athletes to discuss challenges specific to their continent and sport, while also highlighting topics relevant to athletes globally and informing participants about the resources available to them. Facilitated by IOC funding, they were key examples of how the IOC AC Strategy has paved the way for greater investment in athlete representatives and their crucial work across the globe.

The biggest-ever gathering of athlete representatives

Next month, all of these representatives will gather in one place for the 9th International Athletes’ Forum, where participants will have the opportunity to quiz IOC President Thomas Bach, share pain points and best practices relating to their sport or country, and become aligned on key issues affecting all athletes in the Olympic Movement, from anti-doping to mental health.

In the build-up to the Forum, Athlete365 will be sharing interviews and case studies with athlete representatives about the work they have done, highlighting the importance of the athletes’ voice, while updating you on the achievements made so far with the IOC AC Strategy and raising key discussion points ahead of the Forum. We can’t wait to welcome you all to Lausanne to chart the progress made so far and discuss the areas in which we can do more.

The 2019 Athlete365 international  Forum will take place from 13 to 15 April at the SwissTech Convention Centre in Lausanne. To find out more, click here, or get in touch with us on athlete365@olympic.org or @Athlete365.