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16 Oct 2006
IOC Events , Press Release

Cuba to host 11th World Sport for All Congress - Havana, 31 October - 3 November 2006

The 11th World Sport for All Congress will be held in Havana, Cuba, from 31 October to 3 November at the Havana International Conference Centre. It will be the first time that the Cuban Olympic Committee will host the Congress. The focus of this biannual gathering will be on the benefits and challenges of physical activity – from promoting the merits of sport and exercise to people of all ages in the developed and developing world to influencing decision makers who can help implement Sport for All ideas and programmes.
As with previous congresses, this year’s gathering will include thought leaders in the field of health, sport and science. They will share ideas and help direct far-reaching initiatives such as the World Health Organisation’s Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health. Launched in 2004, the goal of this strategy is to improve public health which has drastically deteriorated due to industrialisation, urbanisation, economic development and increasing food market globalisation. Improvement in this area will begin to combat the increase of chronic diseases – a direct result of these forces of modern living – such as cardiovascular conditions, diabetes, strokes, cancer and respiratory diseases which now account for 59% of 57 million deaths annually worldwide.
The agenda of the Congress will include plenary and interactive sessions that will address the following: 
- Health benefits and risks of physical activity 
- Modern ageing and needs for other specific population groups (e.g. people with disabilities, living in poverty) – a challenge for Sport for All 
- Meeting developing countries' specific needs in Sport for All
- Sport for All as recreation and a form of social experience and cultural expression
- Designing strategies and directions for Sport for All
The IOC has been a patron of the World Sport for All Congress since 1986. It organises the Congress with additional support from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the General Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO). The WHO and the GAISF have been patrons since 1994 and 1996 respectively. Each organisation has representatives on the coordinating committee, which is responsible for defining the format of the Congress, ensuring the continuity of its aims, and maintaining a high standard of content. In cooperation with the local organising committee, the programme committee defines the general format of the programme and the themes, evaluates abstracts of papers and selects speakers.

Since the 1998 Barcelona Congress, the IOC has entrusted the organisation of the Congress to a National Olympic Committee (NOC). Those NOCs wishing to host the Congress must qualify by submitting a response in answer to a set of specifications and requirements.
Media information
Media wishing to cover the event are requested to contact Pedro Cabrera Isidrón, Head of Press at the Cuban Olympic Committee, tel. + 53 7 883 54 26, e-mail: and to inform the IOC Communications Department of their attendance, +41 21 621 6111, e-mail:
Media travelling from countries requiring a visa to enter Cuba are requested to make the necessary arrangements with their relevant embassies.
For more information regarding the programme, visit the official Sport for All Congress website:
About the World Sport for All Congress
The World Sport for All Congress provides an ideal forum for exchanging ideas and experiences in the area of Sport for All at an international level. The previous Sport for All Congress, held in Rome, Italy in 2004, gathered 1,200 participants from 111 countries.
About the International Olympic Committee
The International Olympic Committee (IOC), created in 1894, is a non-government organisation with volunteer members who represent its work around the world, and an administrative staff based in Lausanne, Switzerland. The IOC and its 203 National Olympic Committees worldwide promote the Olympic Movement, whose vision is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport. In addition to selecting the host city and co-ordinating the staging of the Olympic Games, the IOC and NOCs collaborate with a range of organisations and their members in the public and private sectors to place sport at the service of society. The main goal is to promote the values of Olympism, which include excellence, respect and friendship. For more information please visit
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For more information please contact Emmanuelle Moreau, Communications Manager - Institutional Affairs, mobile: +41-79 637 3017, or contact the IOC Communications Department, tel: +41 21 621 6111, or visit our website at
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