In a visit to the UNHCR headquarters in Geneva on Friday, IOC President Thomas Bach and UNHCR High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi spoke of the great partnership between the two organisations.
Speaking to UNHCR staff in Geneva, President Bach said: ”We have already been working together for 20 years, and we want to extend and expand our cooperation. This partnership helps us to put sport at the service of humankind.”
High Commissioner Grandi described the partnership as “very important”. He added: “at the heart of our cooperation is the desire to use sport as a symbol of hope for people who have so few reasons to look to the future with optimism.”
This partnership helps us to put sport at the service of humankind.
Both men highlighted the recent success of the Refugee Olympic Team (ROT), which was created by the IOC and which competed for the first time at the Olympic Games Rio 2016, helping to highlight the plight of refugees around the world. “They are great spokespeople, great role models and great promoters of our values,” said Mr Grandi.
President Bach added: “The Refugee Olympic Team was the IOC’s vision, but it would never have been possible without UNHCR, without the support on the ground to help us implement such a successful programme.”