A message from Claudia Bokel, IOC Athletes’ Commission Chair
Firstly, I would like to congratulate all the athletes who participated in the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.
I was delighted to see so many inspirational performances and was especially pleased that more than 80% of the athletes in Sochi also chose to vote during the IOC Athletes’ Commission election, which was a record level of participation.
I’m very proud of that fact, and I believe it is due to the presence that we, as the IOC Athletes’ Commission, had within the Olympic Villages. We were there for the athletes throughout the Games if they had any questions or if they wanted to speak to us about any issues.
Personally, I also spoke with many athletes and it was clear that they enjoyed being at the Games, not least because their beds were so close to their venues. It was also great to see that the athletes marched in at the beginning of the Opening Ceremony and could enjoy the whole of the Ceremony – both things that we as the IOC Athletes’ Commission have been fighting for.
Before the Games started, we were also present at the IOC Session, where we discussed Olympic Agenda 2020. IOC President Thomas Bach asked all IOC members to discuss the issues that are relevant to the Olympic Movement and every member from the IOC Athletes’ Commission had their say, which underlines that we are the voice of the athletes and we are here to represent you and your interests within the Olympic Movement.
With that in mind, we will soon be meeting with the WADA Athletes Committee to work on an athlete-friendly version of the WADA Code. The new Code was approved last November, but it is quite a complex legal document, so we are working on a simpler version that highlights the changes and everything else that athletes need to know before the Code comes into force on 1 January next year.
In May, we will also be present at the Work In Sports Exhibition (WISE) in Lausanne, which is a very important event for any athlete looking to follow a career path in sports once they finish competing. Alongside the IOC Athlete Career Programme, this career fair will be a very useful resource for those looking at a career after sport.
Following the Athletes’ Commission elections in Sochi, I would like to take this opportunity to thank our two outgoing members – Beckie Scott and Saku Koivu – as well as say, ‘Welcome aboard’ to Ole Einar Bjørndalen and Hayley Wickenheiser.
It’s always sad when terms come to an end, but it’s also good to have fresh views and it’s nice to have members who are close to the current athletes, so we look forward to working together with Ole Einar and Hayley in the coming years.
For those of you who didn’t get the chance to speak to us in Sochi, I would like to remind you that you can contact us at any time by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are here to represent you, so please get in touch if you have any issues to raise or if you have any questions to ask.
With my best wishes,