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20 Jun 2007
IOC News , Development through sport

World Refugee Day 2007 – What sport can contribute

On the occasion of today’s World Refugee Day, the sports community stands in solidarity with the millions of refugees and displaced people around the world. A week ago, during his meeting with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), António Guterres, the IOC President, Jacques Rogge, recalled that in the framework of its Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, the IOC will continue, through sports and funding programmes, to assist those who are ravaged by war and disease. Much of the world’s population can benefit from the role that sport plays in building a safe, more prosperous and peaceful society.
Bringing joy and hope in refugee camps
The IOC and the UNHCR have worked together since 1996 on sports projects for refugee camps and resettlement areas around the world. Basic sports equipment and recreational activities are offered to these deprived populations, composed mostly of children and young people who are particularly in need of leisure activities to overcome the idleness of their life in a camp. Sports activities are also organised to facilitate dialogue between refugees and local communities surrounding the camps. National Olympic Committees of the countries in which refugee camps are situated are, as much as possible, also associated with the projects.
‘GIVING IS WINNING’: a concrete example
‘Giving is Winning’ is a joint IOC-UNHCR project being organised in the run-up to the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. The athletes, officials and members of the Olympic Movement are encouraged to donate sports and casual clothes which will then be distributed by the UNHCR to various refugee camps around the globe.
Learn more about humanitarian assistance through sport
Learn more about World Refugee Day
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