Fri | May 24, 2019

Grange shines spotlight on analysis, data at sport forum

Published:Wednesday | October 31, 2018 | 12:00 AMRaymond Graham/ Gleaner Writer
Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange with Oliver Dudfield, head of sport development and peace at the Commonwealth Secretariat. The two were among speakers at a sports forum on Monday at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston.

Representative of the major local sporting bodies along with students from institutions including G.C. Foster College, the University of West Indies and Mico University College were present at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel on Monday to discuss the impact of sport on national development.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia Grange, who hosted the forum said sport helps in nation building and must be approached seriously.

"How we measure the value of sport, with analysis and data, is very important and that is the reason why we are seriously working on a sport policy with contribution from all sectors," she said. The minister stated that empirical evidence was very important as nothing cannot be achieved without data. Grange called on all sectors to become involved in making the Sport Policy a reality as everyone needs to be on board.

The main address was made by Oliver Dudfield, head of sport for development and peace at the Commonwealth Secretariat.

Dudfield is making his first visit to the island after being invited here by Grange when she attended the sixth UNESCO World Conference of Sport Ministers in 2017 in Kazan, Russia where the Kazan Action Plan was adopted.

"The Kazan Action Plan represents a coherent mechanism for sport policy development, implementation and monitoring, focusing on translating policy intent into measurable implementation," Dudfield said.

Dudfield stated that the achievement of sustainable development goals can only be realised if a broad range of public authorities, sports and educational organisations and other stakeholders are mobilised.

He will lead the revision of the National Sport Policy. It is designed to foster greater participation in sport, promote intellectual and physical health, enhance social and economic well-being, create a healthier and more productive labour force and stimulate greater avenues for economic development while fostering a society of social cohesion by building bridges of friendship at all levels of the Jamaican society.

Other speakers included Professor Michael Taylor, Dean of Science and Technology University of West Indies who spoke on Sports and the Environment and Michael Fennell, chairman of Independence Park Limited, who made a contribution on the Value and Impact of Sport Infrastructure.