UOC to return Olympism message to schools after long hiatus

Ugandan athlete Peruth Chemutai. PHOTO/AFP  

What you need to know:

  • But while they waited for schools to open, UOC forgot to look closer to home. UOC are an umbrella body with about 33 sports federations under their wings.

Over the next four months, Uganda Olympic Committee (UOC) through their culture and education commission hope to reach about 50 schools to spread their values.

The five pillars; joy of effort, fair play, practicing respect, pursuit of excellence and, balance between body, will and mind - will be taught under the ‘Olympism Full Circle Initiative’ that climaxes June and is funded by the Olympic solidarity.

Full Circle seeks to see students undertake 25 activities, five from each of the aforementioned educational pillars.
“We have been working with 50 schools previously but after Covid-19, things might have changed and we know that we might have to create new partnerships,” commission chairperson and badminton president Annet Nakamya, said in a press conference to launch the project at the UOC offices last Friday.

UOC, according to its president Donald Rukare, see “schools as a launch pad” for their “theory of change which entails empowering young people as they will later on take our values to their families and communities.”

But while they waited for schools to open, UOC forgot to look closer to home. UOC are an umbrella body with about 33 sports federations under their wings.

These federations superintend over clubs that have youthful athletes that could also do with the above pillars which UOC general secretary Beatrice Ayikoru said “apply to all of us in our day-to-day life.” 

Nakamya agrees that they need to start empowering their own federations.

Meanwhile, speaking for some of the teachers that will be tasked with spreading the message, Fahad Musanga hopes “to instill a winning mindset in the students.”

Musanga is a product of UOC school debates dating back to 2018. He played football and handball in school and has not only pursued coaching coaches in the same but is also the assistant games’ teacher at Kiira College - Butiki.

“We have Olympic clubs in these schools that enable us run such programmes.

The major challenge for athletes in schools is to balance both education and sports. So such initiatives help us to build that discipline and keep people focused on achieving their goals both in class and on the field of play,” Musanga said.

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