Away from his regular training ahead of the 2018 ITTF African Championships, Aruna Quadri on Tuesday August 28, 2018 put smiles on the faces of students of SOS Children’s Village International in Isolo, a suburb in Lagos, Nigeria.
Accompanied by his wife – Ganiat Aruna, the 2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open champion said he decided to show his compassion for the less privileged as he had to go through thick and thin to become what he is today.
Aruna Quadri and his spouse were received at the SOS Children’s Village by the National Fund Development and Communication Coordinator, Gboyega Fadowole-Aje who described Aruna’s gesture as commendable while hoping that other sports stars in Nigeria would take a cue from the athlete.
“We want to first of all congratulate you on your victory at the just concluded Nigeria Open and wish you well in your endeavours. We were indeed touched by this your singular gesture and we believe your presence in the Village would surely inspire the children to aim high like you in their endeavours. On behalf of the Country Director, we are grateful and we wish well in your endeavours,” Gboyega Fadowole-Aje said.
For Aruna Quadri, the gesture has been part of his plans to support the disadvantaged people in the society. “This is another way to show love to those who are not privilege and I believe this small gesture will augment what others have been doing for them. I am doing this to also give back to the society where I emerged from and this will not be a one-off thing as I hope to make it a regular in my plans whenever I am home in Nigeria,” the world number 18 said.
Also, the National Store Coordinator of SOS Children’s Villages, Lawrence Agbaegbu believes the efforts of the table tennis star is a welcome development while urging other well-meaning individuals and corporate bodies to support the centre which is an international home for the less privilege.
Aside the mini table donated by Aruna Quadri, food items valued at thousands of dollars was given to the home.
Aruna Quadri also took time out to play table tennis with some of the children in the centre.
Funke – Treasure Durodola – an Assistant Director of Programmes at the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) has announced a pet project for girls – the Funke-Treasure Table Tennis Championship (F3TC).
The championship is aimed at developing the girl-child from low income families through sports and empowerment sessions in life skills. The competition, to be held annually in Ibadan, will kick off in September 2018.
Ahead of that, in August, there is to be a table-tennis novelty match in Lagos and Ibadan with the theme: ‘Media for F3TC ‘. Besides creating awareness for F3TC, the aim will be to engage accomplished female media professionals, as championship ambassadors to support the girls.
According to Mrs. Durodola, who has worked at the FRCN for eighteen years, the maiden edition will involve more than a hundred students, launching them from School to Spotlight. We want to reduce the rate at which girls drop out after Junior Secondary level in schools, we want to keep them engaged through sports and give them the opportunity to use sports to create value for themselves and negotiate their continued stay in school.
We hope to double this every year until we create a critical mass of aware, informed and fearless girls who will mature into womanhood with knowledge and key skills, Funke-Treasure adds.
The Championship is in three categories:
1. The Competitors, who will come from public and private schools in the 13 local government areas of Ibadan City;
2. The Basic Learners, aged between eight and ten years and who cannot play the game. They will be picked randomly and mentored over a period of eight years to prepare them for global competitions like the Olympics;
3. Trainee Coaches: these will be girls to be trained as coaches and who will easily feed into the F3TC as well as the Tennis Federation in Oyo State.
During the four-day programme, which includes a coaching clinic, the championship hopes to host, on a daily basis, about 145 girls in the three categories; 46 teachers/games masters; 10 coaches and 10 officials; LOC members and not less than 100 guests and spectators daily during the 4-Day event.
There will be empowerment sessions for the participants to address various life-enhancing issues, including financial literacy; drug and reproductive health education. In addition, there will be a cervical cancer vaccination for all the girls and women attendees, Funke-Treasure assured.
F3TC is proud to work with 5 – time Table Tennis Olympian; Level Two High Performance Coach (ITTF); and Sports & Exercise Analyst, Ms. Bosede Kaffo; on this championship, amongst others.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and C40 Cities today committed to partner on climate transition by working for sustainable Olympic Games. This unique global partnership was announced by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, Chair of the IOC Sustainability and Legacy Commission, alongside Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris and C40 Chair, at the first edition of the Transition Forum.
C40 and the IOC plan to work with interested cities, candidate cities and host cities of the Olympic Games to help them achieve their sustainability objectives, which will further contribute to their regions’ broader climate initiatives.
The IOC’s Sustainability Strategy, which is one of the pillars of the IOC’s strategic roadmap, Olympic Agenda 2020, concentrates on five focus areas, one of which is climate.
“Given that the next four editions of the Olympic Games will be held in significant cities that are part of the C40 network, this collaboration was a natural and fantastic opportunity,” said HSH Prince Albert II. “Our goal is to make the Olympic Games best fit the long-term needs and objectives of the host cities. That includes incorporating sustainability in all aspects of planning for and delivering the Olympic Games. By signing this MOU, we will be able to better assist current and future host cities of the Olympic Games in achieving their climate change goals by utilising the expertise and experience of the C40, and for both parties to showcase related initiatives and results.”
The host cities for the next three Olympic Games – Tokyo (in 2020), Paris (in 2024) and Los Angeles (in 2028) – are members of the C40 Steering Committee. The host of the next Olympic Winter Games, Beijing (in 2022), is also a key member of the C40 network, which groups together 96 cities committed to leading the way towards a healthier and more sustainable future.
“Hosting the Olympic Games is a unique privilege for any city, and provides an amazing opportunity to accelerate the climate and air quality initiatives that mayors need to implement for the future of their citizens,” said Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris and Chair of C40. “This partnership between the IOC and C40, two organisations with a long experience of showcasing cities, will ensure the Olympic Games and climate transition go hand in hand in securing a sustainable future for everyone.”
“The Olympic and Paralympic Games are one of the world’s largest sports events. Sport has the power to change the world,” said Yuriko Koike, Governor of Tokyo. “Tokyo, as the host city of the Olympic Games 2020, will play the role responsibly. We will work with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee to demonstrate to the world that Tokyo works integrally on the environmental, social and economic aspects of 21st-century sustainable development, contributing to the achievement of the United Nations 2030 Agenda.”
“Los Angeles is where the world comes to compete, and the 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games are an opportunity to showcase our city’s sustainable values,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. “Climate change knows no boundaries, and only through global cooperation can we overcome this global challenge. Working together, the IOC and C40 can use the Olympic moment to help our planet heal and our people grow.”
As people from around the world take time to reflect upon the state of the planet on this World Environment Day, the IAAF is delighted to share this message from running legend Haile Gebrselassie who reminds us of the importance of clean air within athletics and the urgent need to continue the battle to combat air pollution.
“Seven million people die due to poor air quality every year,” Gebrselassie notes. “Enough is enough.”
When he became president of the Ethiopian Athletics Federation in November 2016, his first action was to move the main national team training base from Addis Ababa to outside the capital. “It is better for their health and their performance,” he said.
“Millions of people run every day and it is growing. Air quality matters and I am proud that our athletes and our sport are leading an ambitious campaign to tackle this problem. Working with UN Environment on air quality and joining the International Olympic Committee’s initiative with UN Environment for its ‘Clean Seas Campaign’ are both important steps to keeping our planet as healthy as we want the next generation to be,” said IAAF President, Sebastian Coe.
With its recent pledge to help beat the global air pollution crisis in mind, the IAAF has teamed up today with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and UN Environment for its ‘Clean Seas Campaign’ to increase global awareness of marine litter and to implement measures that address gaps in waste management.
The IAAF is one of seven major sporting bodies and representatives from European and Oceania National Olympic Committees who have joined forces in the effort to support the IOC in addressing this global issue.
“The IOC is embracing sustainability in its day-to-day operations, as well as taking a proactive leadership role to inspire Olympic stakeholders and the wider sports community to implement best sustainability practices,” said Prince Albert of Monaco, who serves as the Chair of the IOC Sustainability and Legacy Commission. “Making a pledge to the UN Environment’s Clean Seas Campaign is another important example of how the IOC is implementing its Sustainability Strategy.”
Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of UN Environment and a member of the IOC Sustainability and Legacy Commission, said: “This is the biggest commitment ever made from sport to address plastic pollution. The International Olympic Committee’s Clean Seas pledge will transform the awareness and use of plastic waste in sport. We are delighted to see the actions taken by so many sporting organisations as well as sponsors.”
The IAAF has already pledged to introduce measures to reduce plastic waste at future IAAF events, and to encourage member federations to follow suit in addition to its air quality partnership with UN Environment. Some actions pledged by other sporting bodies:
– World Sailing will pledge to implement an ambitious waste reduction strategy for all its events by 2019, and launch an education programme to reach an estimated 70 million sailors.
– The International Triathlon Union (ITU) will work closely with its local organising committees, national federations, stakeholders and the IOC to raise awareness of the issue of marine litter.
– The International Surfing Association (ISA) will elect a Sustainability Partner by the end of 2018, aiming to implement a plan to use, reuse and recycle plastics at ISA World Championships by 2019, and expand its education materials on sustainability.
– The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) is decreasing plastic use and encouraging recycling at its headquarters, and providing recycling education opportunities at national and youth camps.
– The International Golf Federation (IGF) is working with governing bodies, national associations and grassroots facilities to drive more responsible resource use through the GEO Foundation.
– World Rugby has undertaken a variety of actions to reuse and recycle, and will implement new measures with a focus on the reduction of plastic waste.
Other National Olympic Committees from around the world will also be joining the Clean Seas movement with their own commitments – such as Spain and Germany, which are reducing waste and working on raising awareness nationally.
Today, UN Environment and the IAAF have announced a new partnership to address the issue of air quality which is leading to 7 million deaths across the world. The partnership will be supported by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC) who will be working to create an air quality monitoring network that will eventually link almost 1,000 athletics tracks around the world.
The five-year partnership was announced coinciding with the conclusion of the World Health Assembly in Geneva. Nearly 91% of the world’s population breathes air that does not meet World Health Organization air quality guideline levels.
“Getting the world of athletics taking action on air quality is a massive breakthrough for action on this issue. Everyone loses if the air is dirty. But this plan to get 1000 monitors on tracks, support from greats such as Seb Coe and Haile Gebrselassie, I am sure we can begin to clean the skies across the world,” said Erik Solheim, Executive Director, UN Environment.
Commenting on the partnership, IAAF President Sebastian Coe said: “We are delighted to join forces with UN Environment to raise awareness and collect data that will enable our athletes and communities around the world to help tackle this silent killer. We hope that governments, community leaders and the public take a greater interest in what affects every breath they take.”
By engaging a community of professional athletes, local and national governments, community leaders and a growing number of people worldwide who choose to run as their main form of exercise, the IAAF pledges to not only raise awareness about air pollution, but to contribute key data in the battle to combat it as well.
The key objectives of the partnership between IAAF, UN Environment and CCAC are:
• Create an air quality monitoring network by collecting data from all IAAF certified tracks around the world – approximately 1,000 – within five years.
• Work with international NGOs and partners to create a real time air quality database with global coverage.
• Create a major city network of air quality monitors that can help runners choose the best times to run in their cities
• Work with local and national governments to better understand the effects of air quality on the quality of life in communities.
• Study the correlation of air quality on the performance of athletes (with the IAAF Health and Science Department)
• Lead and join global campaigns for cleaner air
Expanding their commitment beyond the issue of air pollution, the IAAF further pledged to introduce measures to reduce plastics at future IAAF events and encourage IAAF member federations and permit meetings to follow suit. An estimated 360 million tonnes of plastics will be produced this year, with the figure expected to grow to 619 million tonnes per year by 2030.
With an informal network of more than half a billion runners around the world, no other sport has the same global reach as athletics to create awareness on the health impacts of air pollution. It is estimated that 6% of the world’s population of 7.6 billion run regularly, a figure expected to rise to more than 10% in the next few years.
Earlier this month, the IAAF announced its support for UN Environment’s BreatheLife campaign. Marathon legends Paula Radcliffe and Haile Gebrselassie stepped up as the first IAAF Ambassadors for the initiative. To learn more about air quality in your city, visit breathelife2030.org.
The 2018 Ladies in Sport Conference will take place on the 1st of June at the Lagos Sheraton Hotel Ikeja. The conference features international expert speakers like the International business development manager for the La Liga, Javier Del Rio; Sports facility Manager, Chris Hague; CAS member Deanna Reiss and returning for this year’s edition International NBA Broadcaster, Benny Bonsu.
Joining them will be Myvonne Alasia, Head of Digital Imaginarium; Mfon Udoka , GM, Nigerian Basketball national team and Head of operations, CBL and last but not the least popular Big Brother housemate, Antoinette Lecky.
The Convener of the Ladies in Sports conference while speaking to the media today Tega Onojaife, promised that the program which is aimed at preparing sports federations on how to attract more private sector investment into sports will be action packed.
She Said: “The theme for this year is “building structures that last” and we are looking to share proven business models that will help federations to create more revenue. We will also be sharing governing policies and crisis resolutions that prevent and solve in house crisis”.
Speaking further Onojaife stated that: “Most importantly the Ladies In Sport Conference would look into how we can engage the community to buy into and follow our local athletes and sports more. And also have better welfare packages for our athletes. All in all, it will a well-rounded conference that you don’t want to miss”.
This year will also see 5 athletes Lauretta Onye, Mercy Genesis, Magdalene Ukato, Justina Aniefiok and Oyinlomo Quadri receive grants to help them further in their careers.
The 2018 Ladies in sports conference is open to all Sports federations, club administrators, corporate bodies and the media.
Match Day 20 recorded the highest turn out of fans voting in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) VAT Wonder Goal with a combined total of 5400 voting on the twitter handle and the website. For the first time, the votes on the website topped those of the twitter and it was Rangers International’s Tope Olusesi who drew the highest crowd with 3621 votes to beat Ikechukwu Nwani to second place.
Nwani of Nasarawa United trailed Olusesi on both polls but went quite close on twitter where he polled 118 to the winner’s 121. The total for Nwani came to 1537 votes. The Rangers man had landslide on the website with over 67 percent of the votes given him 3500 votes to Nwani’s 1419, about 29 percent.
Nyima Nwagua of Kano Pillars finished in third place with combined votes of 155 ahead of Chidi Nwachukwu of Rivers United whose total came to 87 votes.
“This is a major turning point for the online polls”, remarked Niyi Oyeleke, Production Manager at SuperSports. “It demonstrates that interest is not only rising on the league but also on the VAT Wonder Goal offering. It is a milestone to be built on in growing followership for the league and can help in marketing the league through data mining if the profile of the voters can be obtained”.
Olusesi thus becomes the second Rangers International player to win the award this season and his win comes directly after his team mate, Kelvin Itoya was voted VAT Wonder Goal winner for Match Day 19.
His goal drew Rangers level in a 1-1 draw with Wikki Tourists and came off a wave of counter offensive after Wikki Tourists lost the ball in Rangers half and left wing back, Isaac Loute located Olusesi who made a perfect control inside the box to calmly hit a volley despite being put under pressure by a defender.
The VAT Wonder Goal was introduced in the NPFL by the League Management Company (LMC) and is supported by the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS) to strengthen club and community engagement and also create awareness for tax payment within the football community.
Olusesi will be presented his prize at a ceremony to hold during a Rangers home fixture at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu. The prize money of N150,000 will be shared equally between the player and a charity based in Enugu that he will nominate.
Others who have won the award so far this season include the duo of Rivers United’s Emeka Ogbugh and Sochima Elum, Sunshine Stars’ Sikiru Alimi and Sikiru Olatunbosun of MFM FC.