Australian Olympic sports organizations will be supported by the Australian government amid Covid19 pandemic. Australia’s Minister for Youth and Sport, Richard Colbeck announced a fund of $34.7 million to support the struggling Olympic organizations. The funding will be made over the next two years to support the sector amid the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and help high-performance athletes to prepare for major events.
“With the Tokyo 2020 Games rescheduled to 2021, the Olympics and Paralympics are likely to be one of the first major international sporting events to take place following the COVID-19 pandemic, with Australian athletes set to inspire the next generation of athletes,” Colbeck said.
“This funding will support our Olympic and Paralympic athletes and coaches as they prepare for Tokyo, as well as the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
“The Australian Institute of Sport will distribute the high-performance grants to our national sporting organisations who will identify, train and develop their most promising athletes.
“The Government is aware many national sporting organisations have had to stand down staff and reduce their hours because of COVID-19.
“Without this investment to high-performance funding, there is a significant risk our best coaches and high-performance support staff will face an uncertain future.”
Confirmation of the funding boost followed a joint submission from the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC), Paralympics Australia and Commonwealth Games Australia.
The three organisations have thanked Colbeck in confirming funding for their “three-point plan”.
“This is the certainty that our Olympic athletes and sports were looking for as they pick up the pandemic pieces and resume training for the Tokyo Games next year,” AOC President John Coates said.
“It’s on their behalf that we thank the Government for its response to the 3 Point Plan for funding that Australian Olympic Committee submitted in partnership with Commonwealth Games Australia and Paralympics Australia.
“This has been a period of great uncertainty and anguish for athletes.
“The first part of the equation was addressed when the IOC and our Tokyo friends agreed on postponing the Games by one year.
“What this does is address the other part of the problem for our athletes and their sports by ensuring that they can leave no stone unturned in pursuing the best possible preparation.
“There are a lot of relieved athletes and sports administrators out there today.”