IFMA is proud to be part of United Through Sports, and after four months of IFMA virtual tournaments both national and world, the IFMA athletes proudly entered the virtual arena in an opening ceremony promoting One Spirit, One heart, unity, diversity, uniting with youth of all abilities standing United Through Sports.
Bangkok was the host and cities from as far as Washington to Abu Dhabi to Los Angeles to Ekaterinburg to Astana to the Gold Coast, all took center stage with a united voice for inclusion, equality, nondiscrimination and for peace.
IOC President, Thomas Bach, applauded United Through Sports for this initiative. The IOC has proudly given patronage to this event which has invited youth of all abilities and backgrounds into an all inclusive event.
IPC President, Andrew Parsons, encouraged the Youth of the world to continue to be role models, to remain active and be united in the spirit of sport for a better tomorrow.
Mary Davis, CEO of Special Olympic,s praised the organizers in their ability to demonstrate the power of inclusive sport for all.
8th UN General Secretary, Ban Ki-moon, stated, “United we must stand for the rights of youth ensuring equality and inclusion for all youth.
GAISF and SportAccord President, Raffaele Chiulli, stated that the GAISF family and members are playing an active part in this initiative and that we all must continue to promote and celebrate the fundamental principles of equality, diversity and inclusion.
The President of the National Olympic Committee of Thailand, General Prawit Wongsuwan, stated that the Kingdom of Thailand is proud to host the youth of the world in this Youth Festival 2020, thanking all the organizations and the youth.
Khunying Patama Leeswadtrakul, Thailand’s IOC Member and Chair of the LOC, stated the pandemic requires our solidarity and unity and that we all must work together for the benefit of all our youth.
IFMA is especially proud of the President of United Through Sports Stephan Fox who made the final welcome speech to the youth giving them words of encouragement and finished with 2 simple words “You Rock”
The Youth of the world came together in song and harmony to welcome the athletes and the world with classics like “Ain’t no Mountain High”, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, “Heal the World” and “Happy”. Over the next days they will compete in 5 different competitions and reunite together again for the Closing Ceremony on the 22nd.
Straight off the heels of the IFMA World Virtual Championships, the event will see the participation of all IFMA’s Virtual Championships medallists as they continue their journey to compete under the IFMA Flag against over 80 participating sporting organisations all standing United through Sports.