Biggest-ever WOA Grants Programme supports more Olympians than ever

25 | 10 | 2018

Ten inspiring Olympian-led projects and 26 National Olympians Associations are set to benefit from WOA grants as the recipients of the WOA 2018 Grants Programme are announced.

Five projects have been awarded 2018 Service to Society grants, while a further five have been granted Service to Olympians grants. The successful recipients, from across all five continents, will each receive US five thousand dollars ($5,000) towards the running costs of their project as part of WOA’s mission to enhance the role of Olympians in society and support them in their life transition.

In addition, a record 26 National Olympians Associations (NOAs) have applied for a 2018 WOA Development Grant to fund regular programmes, activities and administration costs associated with the operations of their organisation. 

“Every year, the WOA Grants Programme increases in reach and impact and this year we are proud to report that we have achieved our biggest-ever funding programme with a record number of grants distributed,” said WOA President Joël Bouzou OLY.

“We are thrilled to assist such worthy Olympian-led projects with Service to Society and Service to Olympians grants, while also supporting our National Olympians Associations through our annual NOA Development grant programme.”

Launched in 2016, Service to Society grants empower Olympians to make a positive difference in their communities and build a better society through sport by supporting projects that align with the Olympic values and the activities of the Olympic Movement.

The 2018 Service to Society grant recipients are:

  • Liberia [Africa]: Young Wrestling Volunteers Project - increasing access to sport in slums and other underprivileged neighbourhoods
  • Peru [Americas]: Impacting Lives through Table Tennis - a social programme aimed at promoting children’s participation in schools
  • Philippines [Asia]: Hope through Sports - a project that runs sports clinics for street children
  • Ukraine [Europe]: Olympic Week promoting Olympic values in collaboration with the NOC
  • Fiji [Oceania]: Social Inclusion & Athlete Engagement - increasing the number of young people participating in sport and physical activities

The Service to Olympians grant was established earlier this year to support Olympians off the field of play, funding projects and initiatives that directly benefit the ongoing development of Olympians.

The 2018 Service to Olympians grant recipients are:

  • Senegal [Africa]: Olympians Leadership Programme - providing Olympians with the skills to run programmes for charity or business
  • Canada [Americas]: OLY CANADA the launch of an online community for Canadian Olympians
  • South Korea [Asia]: Enhancing the Role of Olympians - building relationships between Olympians and sports leaders through a series of workshops
  • Cook Islands [Oceania]: Ignite Olympians - building the profile and creating passionate leaders of Cook Islands’ Olympians
  • Australia [Oceania]: Women’s Olympian Network - increasing opportunities for female Olympians as they transition to life after sport

Since WOA’s Grants Programme was first established, NOAs, Olympians and communities around the world have directly benefitted from WOA funding. Funded projects include drowning prevention programmes in India and Lithuania, an Olympian-run community chicken farm in Zimbabwe, bringing sport to orphaned children in Malaysia and those affected by conflict in Colombia, boosting sport participation in Palau and granting once-in-a-lifetime wishes to the elderly in the United States. All have epitomised the strong desire of Olympians to use their platform for good and make a positive impact in their communities.

“WOA’s mission is to be to be of service to Olympians, empowering them to help make the world a better place. We firmly believe that Olympians have the ability to make a genuine difference, spreading the spirit and practice of Olympism to drive positive social change. The WOA Grants Programme is one of the ways we can help them achieve this and we look forward to following this year’s grant recipients with interest as the projects come to fruition in the coming months,” President Bouzou added.

You can find out more about WOA’s Service to Society grant programme HERE.