AOC Partners with Pacific School Games
Australian Olympic Committee President John Coates has welcomed a partnership with the Pacific School Games with under 200 days to go before the 10th edition begins in Adelaide later this year.
The biggest multi-sport school competition for Australian and international students will run from December 3-9 delivering a sporting, educational, cultural, social and life-long experience to those competing.
It is expected that about 4,500 school-aged students aged 10 – 19 years will compete across 11 sports at this year’s Games with more than 800 school teachers who will support as team officials.
The Pacific School Games attracts elite school-aged sporting students to participate in a high-level, inclusive, fun and friendly international competition that is heavily focused on grassroots participation.
Multiple students who have competed at the Pacific School Games have gone on to represent Australia at an Olympic Games including basketball player Patty Mills, swimmers Kyle Chalmers, Emma McKeon and Ian Thorpe along with track stars Cathy Freeman, Jana Pittman and Melinda Gainsford-Taylor.
The Australian Olympic Committee supported the Games in 2015 by providing athletes to act as education ambassadors and deliver their ‘Meet with a Champ’ program at several of the education sessions.
Coates explained that a key component to the AOC’s education program is to utilise Olympic athletes to act as role models and ambassadors for the Olympic movement, with the Pacific School Games presenting a fantastic opportunity to do this.
“The Australian Olympic Committee is honoured to be involved in the Pacific School Games in 2017 - a competition I’m sure will showcase Australia’s best junior sporting talent,” Coates said.
“The AOC prides itself on promoting the fundamental principles and values of Olympism in Australia, in particular, in the fields of sport and education and I am sure our ambassadors will encourage young athletes to act in the spirit of the Olympic Games, both in sport and in life.
“The blending of sport with culture and education, is a fundamental principle of Olympism – I think the Pacific School Games embodies this and we are proud to be involved at both this year’s competition and into the future, hopefully inspiring the next generation of Olympic champions,” Coates said.
The Pacific School Games is the flagship event of School Sport Australia, and also provides leadership opportunities for students and teachers in event and team official roles.
More than 700 volunteers will help bring the Pacific School Games to life in Adelaide.
The partnership with the AOC was praised by Pacific School Games president Graeme Jennings who highlighted how important it is to have the support of Australia’s Olympic movement.
“The Pacific School Games team more than welcomes a valuable partnership with the Australian Olympic Committee ahead of the 2017 Games in Adelaide,” Jennings said.
“Although our Games is strongly concentrated on participation at a grassroots level of sport, there have been a number of elite athletes that previously competed at PSG as youngsters before having long and successful careers at the elite level.
“Having a direct connection with the AOC only enhances the Games’ appeal and will offer inspiration for those competing that they too can follow through with their sporting dreams.
“Having the AOC on board will directly complement a significant aspect of the Games, which is to include curricular, educational and cultural opportunities through sport.
“It is an exciting announcement for everyone involved, especially for the boys and girls who are taking the first steps in their sporting careers.”
A number of high-profile ambassadors, provided by the AOC’s partnership, are expected to be announced in the near future as momentum builds towards the Games in December.
The 10th Pacific School Games are proudly supported by the South Australian Tourism Commission through Events South Australia.