Paris 2024 and the IOC: Fostering Global Unity and Social Impact Through Sport

Image: IOC

The International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) is celebrated annually on April 6. It was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 2013 to recognise the power of sport in promoting peace, fostering social inclusion, and contributing to the achievement of development goals. On this day, various organisations, governments, and communities organise events, campaigns, and initiatives to highlight the role of sport in advancing peace and development objectives. These activities may include sports tournaments, workshops, educational programs, and advocacy campaigns aimed at raising awareness of the transformative power of sport.

The upcoming Paris 2024 Olympic Games will unite over 10,500 athletes representing 200 plus National Olympic Committees alongside the IOC Refugee Olympic Team, and the gala is set to start in less than four months.

On this day, the International Olympic Committee has highlighted the strides and initiatives undertaken to position the Paris 2024 Olympics as a beacon for fostering global unity through peaceful competition and fostering more inclusive societies.

Here are some of the achievements of the IOC in this regard:

  • Paris 2024 successfully advocated for a daily 30-minute exercise period in French primary schools, a nationwide initiative implemented in all 36,800 schools, targeting 4.2 million pupils across the country.
  • Over 8,700 schools and higher education institutions have earned the “Génération 2024” label, recognizing their collaboration with local sports clubs and governments to bolster sports participation.
  • The “Terre de Jeux 2024” label has been granted to more than 4,700 local and regional authorities in France, spurring the organization of over 50,000 events and the construction or renovation of sports facilities.
  • The “Bouger Plus” program has positively impacted over 600,000 individuals, with a focus on encouraging physical activity among various groups, including schoolchildren, women, people with disabilities, seniors, and socially marginalized populations.
  • Three million young people have participated in Olympic and Paralympic Weeks, with the ongoing 2024 edition running from April 2nd to 6th.
  • Through the 2024 Endowment Fund established in 2019, Paris 2024 and its partners have supported over 1,100 social projects with a total funding of EUR 47.8 million, benefiting 4.5 million individuals. These projects aim to promote sports participation among women and people with disabilities, as well as emphasize the role of sports in education, equality, inclusion, and professional integration.


Expanding the Legacy of Paris 2024 beyond the French borders:

In 2021, Paris 2024 introduced Impact 2024 International in partnership with the French Development Agency (AFD). This initiative aimed to provide financial backing and technical assistance to projects utilizing sports to address various societal issues such as health, education, inclusion, and equality in African countries.

Since its inception, the program has backed 45 initiatives spanning across 19 African nations, allocating a total of EUR 1.4 million and benefiting nearly 80,000 individuals.

Building upon this successful endeavour, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) recently entered into a partnership with AFD and Paris 2024, with the aim of extending this legacy beyond the Olympic Games.

Under this collaboration, the IOC pledges sustained funding for the most innovative and impactful projects currently supported by Paris 2024 and AFD in Africa. Over an 18-month period, the IOC’s investment endeavours to further cultivate peaceful and inclusive societies through sports across the African continent, with a particular emphasis on bolstering the sustainability and reach of initiatives seeded through Impact 2024 International.

To facilitate the implementation of this initiative, the IOC collaborates with Sport Impact, a pan-African hub connecting civil society organizations with funding opportunities and a network of experts in the field of sports for sustainable development.

IOC President, Thomas Bach said, “By living up to the promise of Games wide open and mobilising all those involved in sport in France and beyond, Paris 2024’s vision has already come to fruition, even before the Games begin.” Not only promoting the elite element of the Games but developing a sustainable healthy future for the society is what the IOC is aiming. “The many initiatives and activities to promote exercise, education, inclusion, equality and a better environment are already having a tangible impact”, added the IOC President.

Also Read: Paris 2024 Olympics Mark Full Gender Parity in Athlete Quotas 

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