What's new with Team TTO

July 07, 2020

A sports-base approach is needed to help the youth

Last week, Trinidad and Tobago faced its own Black Lives Matter (BLM) day of reckoning.…
July 07, 2020

CANOC President calls for IOC to rescind life bans issued to athletes 48 years after…

Caribbean National Olympic Committees (CANOC) President Brian Lewis has called for the International Olympic Committee…
July 04, 2020

Matthews and Collett Banned From Olympics

MUNICH, West Germany, Sept. 8 — The International Olympic Committee barred today two United States…
July 04, 2020

Vincent Matthews and Wayne Collett: A Most Casual Protest With Most Striking Consequences

They stood there casually, one barefoot, hands on hips, the other in thoughtful repose, right…
July 04, 2020

Athletes Will Be Banned From Protesting at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. But the Games Have…

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced new guidelines on Thursday that ban athletes from making…
July 04, 2020

RESOLUTION OF THE IOC EXECUTIVE BOARD WITH REGARD TO RACISM AND INCLUSION

The IOC stands for non-discrimination as one of the founding pillars of the Olympic Movement,…
July 01, 2020

Lewis highlights racial discrimination and gender inequality in sports

"Olympic Order is the Olympic Movement highest award for distinguished contributions to sports. The list…

Tokyo 2021 #1YearToGo

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A sports-base approach is needed to help the youth https://t.co/jPhFCNcTH0
About 2 hours ago
CANOC President calls for IOC to rescind life bans issued to athletes 48 years after podium protests https://t.co/2STW6J177Q
About 2 hours ago
TeamTTO Transformational Leadership Webinar Pt. 2 with the Head of open Campus Academy of Sport, UWI Kervin Jean… https://t.co/zWbk6HZg9j
Tuesday, 07 July 2020 13:26
RT @igcanoc: CANOC President Brian Lewis has called for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to reinstate two African American athlet…
Tuesday, 07 July 2020 13:25

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It’s not who wins or loses an election but how those in power govern. National Sport Organisations (NSOs) are responsible for the governance, development, administration of their sport and all else that goes with those mandates. This includes advocating for sport as a key pillar for the economic and social development of T&T.

Politicians and decision makers seem conflicted about giving sport a seat at the table. I believe that the public supports the idea of a key role for sport in the national, economic and social development of T&T. Economic factors underpin the problems facing sport, however, it is important to change the conversation in T&T about sport and move away from the superficial attitude and approach.

The Ministry of Sport and the Sport Company, guided by Government’s policy on sport will facilitate and provide tax payer’s funds subject to the availability of funds from Ministry of Finance. NSOs that allow their autonomy and authority for their sport to be compromised on the basis that they get Ministry of Sport or the Sport Company funding as a convenient excuse must not be allowed to get away with this deception.

The buck stops with the NSOs, not the Ministry of Sport or the Sport Company. The ongoing reality of elite level athletes both individual and team sports having to participate in international competition and Olympic Qualifiers woefully underprepared and under resourced is manifestly unfair on our individual athletes and national teams.

It is the standard to roll out aggregate financial figures to justify that financial support has been given. But that is just half the story. The grassroot reality of sport for those who have no political or other agenda is that sport in T&T has always been a battle; and don’t imagine the struggle will ever get any easier.

Unless political parties are prepared to commit from a policy perspective to make sport a key pillar in their forward vision for the country, the sustainable development of sport and aspirations to achieve ten or more gold medals by the year 2024 will continue to be a struggle.

International headlines for the wrong reasons and the negative impact on the country’s image. Problems and trouble never go away by denial. The uncomfortable truth is a stark fact of life. It takes real courage to search for the truth and to face the consequences.

We continue to send our national athletes and national teams to important international and Continental events including Olympic qualifiers, underprepared. Those who hide behind their desks, papers and pens and ineffective and shortsighted policies and processes, can continue to do so but it’s the athletes and national teams that face the embarrassment and humiliation.

Appreciate and understand the damage to brand T&T and the importance of protecting our country’s brand. We can’t let others with vested interest define our brand. We have to define it ourselves. Sport helps T&T market itself internationally. Transformation of the sport system is a strategic priority. Sport leaders are elected by sport stakeholders. The ultimate responsibility for their sport is the mandate of the NSOs.

NSOs including the T&T Olympic Committee must do what they were elected to do, which is lead not hide behind the Ministry of Sport and the Sport Company.

Support #10 Golds24 Athlete Welfare and Preparation Fund. Make your donations to any branch of Scotiabank account number 171188. Share the Olympic Dream.

Brian Lewis is the president of the T&T Olympic Committee. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the Olympic Committee.

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