The Olympism in Action Forum packed in two days of panels and speakers celebrating and exploring the Olympic values of friendship, excellence and respect, and how they can be lived by every day. From gold medallists to Argentinian President Mauricio Macri, everyone was on hand in Buenos Aires.
1) Focus on youth
Youth and the future were recurring themes of the Olympism in Action Forum. New sports, new ways of hosting the Games, new fan experiences and more were all on the agenda. A fitting lead-in to the Youth Olympic Games that kick off this weekend here in Buenos Aires.
2) The Athletes’ Rights and Responsibilities Declaration
Over 4,000 athletes from more than 190 countries and 120 sports disciplines. These were the voices that have contributed over the last year to creating the Athletes’ Rights and Responsibilities Declaration, which outlines support and obligations for athletes, by athletes. Covering topics such as anti-doping, integrity, clean sport, career, communications, governance, discrimination, due process and safeguarding from harassment and abuse, the Declaration will be referenced in the Olympic Charter, signifying its important status within the Olympic Movement.
3) Presidents Macri and Bach kick off the Olympism in Action Forum
President of Argentina Mauricio Macri and IOC President Thomas Bach discussed the power of Olympism and the Olympic values of friendship, excellence and respect as the Forum began, ahead of the Youth Olympic Games, which open on 6 October.
4) Tackling corruption in sport
The IOC signed a new agreement with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) to fight competition manipulation and related corruption in sport around the world. The two will combine their joint expertise and work with additional partners, such as INTERPOL, to provide technical assistance and training to UN Member States in prosecuting competition manipulation.
5) Mayor of Buenos Aires Horacio Rodríguez Larreta
The Mayor joined Fernanda Russo, silver medallist at the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) Nanjing 2014 and Young Change-Maker in the Argentine delegation, for a chat about the upcoming YOG in Buenos Aires. With over 8,000 volunteers from all over Argentina ready to go, the Games will be the first ever to have an Opening Ceremony in a street-party style open to the public, and to have complete gender parity among athletes.
6) Dissenting voices
As part of an ongoing commitment to “opening windows and doors” to the world, the IOC invited some prominent critics – including economist Andrew Zimbalist and leader of the No Boston Olympics group Chris Dempsey – to participate in debates about the future of the Games and about ensuring sustainable legacies in host cities, regions and nations.
7) Survivor courage
Survivors of abuse and harassment spoke bravely about their experiences as part of an important ongoing conversation. Safeguarding athletes is a top priority and featured prominently in the new Athletes’ Rights and Responsibilities Declaration.
8) Educating and empowering youth with sport
Shooting Touch and Skateistan are organisations that bring basketball and skateboarding to kids in marginalised communities all over the world. Their founders gave spark talks at the Forum to share their inspiring stories of service through sport.
9) Rio 2016 Refugee Olympic Team (ROT) reunion
At the conclusion of a plenary session on their journey to the Olympic Games Rio 2016, former refugees Yiech Pur Biel, a track & field Olympian and Olympic Refuge Foundation Board member, and Yusra Mardini, a swimming Olympian and UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, called their eight other ROT team-mates and IOC President Bach to the stage for an emotional reunion.
10) Partnering with Mohammad YunusGetty Images
President Bach signed an MoU with Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and social entrepreneur Mohammad Yunus to launch the Athlete365 Business Accelerator, which will support athletes and Olympians with dual careers and career transition opportunities.