The Press Conference for the announcement of Peace and Sport Regional Forum, entitled “Societies in Motion: Rising up through Sport”, was held earlier today with great success and numerous guests, at the roof garden of Electra Metropolis Athens hotel. In collaboration with the Region of South Aegean, the Regional Forum, designed by Peace and Sport, will take place for the first time in Greece, at the iconic island of Rhodes, on October 18th, 2018.
The main goal of the forum is to promote sport as a tool for social development, identify regional challenges and build synergies that encourage the inclusive impact of sport for society. Aiming to attract more than 350 major decision-makers from across the Mediterranean region, the Peace and Sport Regional Forum will bring together regional Head of States, Nobel Peace Prize Laureates, sports governing bodies, high-level athletes, international organizations, NGOs and academia.
The Forum will be marked by the presence of high level speakers including football star and Champion for Peace Christian Karembeu, basketball legend Nikos Galis and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate 2015 Ouided Bouchamaoui.
Key speakers of the press conference’s panel were: George Hatzimarkos, Governor of the region of South Aegean, Joël Bouzou, Peace and Sport’s President and Founder, and Christian Karembeu, Champions for Peace for Peace and Sport.
Initiating the conversation, George Hatzimarkos, Governor of the region of South Aegean, highlighted: “We will be pleased to welcome you on the island of Rhodes for the Peace and Sport Regional Forum. Rhodes is a gateway to cultures, ideas, religions. The Peace and Sport Regional Forum in Rhodes is the best expression of our heritage principles: cooperation and peace. These two values illustrate the DNA of our island.”
Joël Bouzou, Peace and Sport’s President and Founder, pointed up: “Currently there are a great number of peace-through-sport initiatives and some remarkable actions taking place in the Mediterranean region. As a result, we are delighted to work together with the Region of South Aegean to gather key leaders to discuss how to tackle social challenges through sport”.
Christian Karembeu, Champions for Peace for Peace and Sport, carried on underlining among others:
“Sports support the development of team spirit, solidarity and fair play, which are vital values for the progress of social life. I am particularly pleased to be part of this initiative and participate in the dissemination of values for the common good that guide me throughout my career.”
Aegean Airlines is Gold Sponsor for Peace and Sport Regional Forum. Remaining loyal to its promise to bring people closer, Aegean Airlines is working with Peace and Sport on this unique initiative to inspire dialogue, cooperation and growth of societies, through sport, at the island of Rhodes.
“Aegean Airlines is pleased to partner for this event. The island of Rhodes is not only an amazing tourist destination that attracts thousands of travelers from all over the world, it is also the crossroad of cultures and civilizations and a great place to send a message of peace”, said Mrs. Stavroula Saloutsi, Aegean’s Public Relations & Press Director
In the symbolic venue of Greece – the cradle of Olympism and a pivotal crossroads between three continents, the Peace and Sport Regional Forum, which count with the support of Eleven Campaign, will highlight the connection between sport and the local community. The main topic on the agenda will be ‘cities as a hub of innovation and social inclusion through sport’ and focus will be given on success factors in the use of sport as platform to create inclusive communities, networks and regional cooperation. A decision-making Roundtable with a panel of regional policy-makers will help to advance domestic and international development-and-peace objectives utilizing sport.
As part of the forum, Peace and Sport will award three international and four regional organizations and individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to peace, dialogue and social change in the world through sport.
When sport learns , teaches and transmits Peace …
Founded in 2007 by Modern Pentathlon Olympic Medallist and World Champion Joël Bouzou, Peace and Sport is a neutral and independent worldwide organization that is operational in using sport and its values as an instrument for peace.
In less than 10 years, the dynamism of sport has already enabled us to reinsert child soldiers back into society, to help war orphans rebuild their self-confidence, to reintegrate refugees, facilitate access to education, and more…
The use of sport as a pedagogic tool has motivated the international sports movement into tangible action. In parallel, our success in the field has made political leaders and governments aware of how sport can be a genuine and effective mechanism for peace.
Furthermore, we are increasingly working with international companies, to encourage them to integrate sport into their social responsibility and local policies.
Under the high patronage of H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco
I am proud to bring my High Patronage to ‘Peace and Sport, l’Organisation pour la Paix par le Sport’ a humanist initiative that through sport, promotes a spirit of civic-mindedness, of dialogue and of acceptance necessary to ease tensions and establish peace in the world.
Confronted by major crises linked to the trauma of armed conflicts, extreme poverty or the deliquescence of social ties, we have a collective obligation, even an urgent duty, to act in order to improve the quality of life of millions of men, women and children whose suffering is a blemish on the advancement of our century.
In this uncertain world, sport and the rules of sport are a source of stability, education and integration for young people in vulnerable situations, thanks to the values of sharing, tolerance, respect and loyalty that it generates.
Since its inception in 2007, through daily action Peace and Sport has demonstrated the utility of a neutral platform capable of uniting and federating a multitude of decision-makers in politics, sport, economic and civil life around this conviction.
By fostering concertation between these actors, Peace and Sport helps to turn sport into an efficient lever to aid the emergence of sustainable peace in areas of the world that most need it, and to offer new horizons to those for whom the future seems obscure.
More than ever, confronted with the enormity of need, Peace and Sport’s action is useful and necessary.
I am convinced that this organisation, driven by a spirit of generosity and solidarity, brings vulnerable communities the possibility to surpass their differences and contribute to shape a more unified, more peaceful world, concerned with preserving the dignity of each and every man and woman.
Joel Bouzou , President and founder Peace and Sport
Founded in 2007, Peace and Sport is the Monaco-based organization under the High Patronage of H.S.H. Prince Albert II. Its objective is to bring the structuring values of sport to the heart of communities in crisis throughout the world, making sport a vehicle for tolerance, respect and citizenship at the service of sustainable peace. The backbone of its action is a group of over 80 high-level athletes, called “Champions for Peace” who dynamically support the organization’s activities at all levels.
In November 2011, Joël Bouzou was elected President of the World Olympians Association (WOA), the only international organization which unites all of the 100,000 athletes from 145 countries to have competed in an Olympic event.
Current President of the French Federation of Modern Pentathlon, Vice President and former Secretary General (1997 to 2012) of the Union Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM) and a highly accomplished Modern Pentathlete himself, Joël Bouzou has participated in four Olympic Games (Moscow 1980, Los Angeles 1984, Seoul 1988 and Barcelona 1992) winning a bronze medal during the 1984 Games.He won the World Championship title in Modern Pentathlon in 1987.
In 1991, Joël Bouzou founded the association “Rassemblement par le Sport” (“Together through Sport”) and created the “Champions in the Street” program, which helps the social insertion of young people through sport in city suburbs, using champions as role models.
A French national, Joël has been awarded the Legion of Honour (the highest decoration in France), and the National Order of Merit. He has also been decorated with the French medal ‘Médaille d’Or de la Jeunesse et des Sports’ (‘Gold Medal for Youth and Sports’).
In 2010, Joël was awarded a Diploma Honoris Causa in Humanities from the UN-mandated University for Peace in Costa-Rica in recognition of “his unique worldwide leadership role in promoting peace and mutual understanding among different cultures, and his leadership of organizations devoted to these objectives.”
Joël Bouzou is currently Advisor to H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco, Administrator of the A.S. Monaco Football Club and Member of the IOC Sport and Active Society Commission.