FIBA signs memorandum of understanding with OLYMPAFRICA foundation

FIBA has concluded a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Olympafrica Foundation, opening a gateway to sport and Olympism for thousands of children across the African continent.

Both parties will work together across Africa to promote:

– Sport and sport education in general, with strong emphasis on basketball and especially 3 x 3;

– Social, economic and personal development through sport, especially for younger participants;

– The values and ideals of the Olympic Movement;

– Peace through common sports interests, activities and cooperation.

The MOU will be supported by FIBA’s Regional Office in Africa, which will donate basketball equipment to Olympafrica centres hosting the programme. FIBA’s support also includes coaching, officiating and training.

Olympafrica already has wide experience in establishing sports and sports education centres. The programme will initially be implemented in 20 centres, with Olympafrica actively promoting basketball locally by organising development programmes, events and competitions. Under the MOU, Olympafrica will also ensure that a minimum of one thousand children under the age of sixteen participate in each of the centres.

FIBA Africa President Anibal MANAVE said: ‘‘This Memorandum of Understanding confirms again how important basketball can be to communities and the positive way it can bring people together and help them off the court as well”.

He then added: ‘‘We are very happy to have signed this partnership with Olympafrica, and we are excited to launch the programme and see the benefits it produces for the kids who take part.’’

FIBA Secretary General Andreas ZAGKLIS , for his part said: ‘‘The fact that existing centres, run by the Olympafrica Foundation, have a track record of success means we are highly confident basketball can now be used even more actively as a lever to secure positive outcomes for young people in Africa.’’

Olympafrica President Moustapha BERRAF, who doubles as ANOCA President, said: ‘‘This agreement is coming at the right time, and it is greatly appreciated. It will help reinforce the already strong attraction that Olympafrica kids have for basketball. 3 x 3 Basketball will definitely be one of the most practised sports in our network; it is henceforth imperative to boost our Olympafrica centres with such partnerships. What has been done so far is exemplary and effective, but it must be constantly reinforced, because it is an ongoing process that will provide our Olympafrica centres with tangible and intangible infrastructure designed to bring more opportunities to Africa’s youth. The need for mentoring is a reality, and this is why these centres have been set up and spread across Africa. Basketball, like many other sports, is a catalyst for promoting Olympic values among youth, who are the Olympic and sporting future of Africa and the world. Our goal is healthy minds in healthy bodies. Olympafrica builds character, discipline, hard work, respect for opponents and the pursuit of excellence, which Africa’s youth need to emerge through sport.’’

Olympafrica Executive Director Alassane Thierno DIACK, also said: ‘‘Olympafrica is very keen to increase access to 3×3 basketball for young girls and boys who regularly use our centres. Lots of our youth are interested in basketball, so we are very pleased that this MOU will do just that – help us use basketball to reach out to more young people and foster their social and personal development.’’

Founded in 1988, the Olympafrica Foundation aims to foster the Olympic spirit by offering a wide range of sports and social activities for the benefit of African communities, focusing particularly on youths.

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