ICF Makes Positive Moves Forward: Backs Women and Bids for Paralympics
The International Canoe Federation (ICF) Board of Directors, chaired by the ICF President Mr Perurena, met in Lausanne, Switzerland between 18 and 20 March 2009.
With the backdrop of the Swiss Alps and Lac Leman the ICF Board made some important decisions for the future of Canoeing. The ICF Board made a strong statement by approving the inclusion of Women’s C1 categories in the World Championships for 2010 for both Canoe Slalom and Canoe Sprint. Exhibition events will be held in both disciplines in 2009 and the ICF will promote and monitor the performances of these events to ensure that an adequate level of competition occurs in 2010.
The ICF President, Mr Perurena proudly stated ‘The ICF had some very constructive discussions this week and a common theme was the need to improve our gender equity in canoeing competitions. By adding Women’s C1 competitions to the World Championships we are well on our way to achieving our objectives’.
The ICF Board also placed emphasis on the broader development of Canoeing, in particular initiatives for canoeists with disabilities and the push for inclusion of Canoeing into the Paralympic Games, by approving additional funds to this area.
The ICF 2nd Vice President and former Canoe Slalom World Champion, Richard Fox commented ‘The ICF is aware that there are paddlers all over the world with disabilities, we need to bring them to a suitable competition such as at the Paralympic Games to show how good these athletes are.’
The Board of Directors received a detailed report and presentation from Olympic Solidarity Director, Mr Pere Miro and Deputy Director, Ms Pamela Vipond.
The IOC Olympic Solidarity programme, through National Olympic Committees around the world, provided over $700 000 to canoeing national federations over the past four years enabling many athletes to qualify for the Olympic Games in Beijing. For some the dream went further, as in the case of Benjamin Boukpeti of Togo who, with additional assistance from the ICF development program, won a bronze medal in K1 slalom.
During the meetings the ICF launched Planet Canoe which is the new ICF’s promotional publication and approved budgets for TV broadcasting support for Canoeing competitions.
For more information, please visit the ICF’s website: www.canoeicf.com