Istanbul to host WOA World Olympians Forum 2023

The third WOA World Olympians Forum will be hosted by the city of Istanbul next year. The World Olympians Forum (WOF) brings together Olympian representatives from all five continents to discuss and workshop the best ways to bring the values of the Olympic Movement to life in their communities through service to society projects and events.

The first WOF was held in Moscow in 2015 and the second was in Lausanne in 2019 where more than 150 participants from 107 National Olympians Associations (NOAs) came together under the theme Olympians for Life. The Forum reinforced the special status of Olympians as the ambassadors at the heart of the Olympic Movement, while driving forward WOA’s mandate to strengthen the global network of NOAs to support the needs of Olympians and empower them to spread the Olympic ideals.

The historic city of Istanbul is a potent symbol of the inclusive values of the Olympic Movement, standing as it does as a gateway between continents and cultures. The WOF is one of many special events to be hosted next year in Turkey as part of the celebrations of the centenary of the founding of the Turkish Republic.

WOA President Joel Bouzou OLY said: “It is a huge honour to be a part of the celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Turkish Republic. Olympians are the living embodiment of the values of the Olympic Movement. The World Olympians Forum is a place for Olympians of all continents to share their stories of how they give back to their communities, to inspire each other and to share best practices.

“The two previous editions of the WOF led to many more projects being initiated by Olympians around the world to bring together their communities, provide sporting opportunities for disadvantaged youth, help fight obesity and inactivity and to protect the environment. We are looking forward to working with the city of Istanbul to empower even more Olympians to make the world a better place through sport.”

Honourable Ekrem Imamoglu, the Mayor of Istanbul said: “As Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, the governing body of Europe’s largest city, we aim to bring the great impact of sport and the Olympic Movement to everyone in our city. In this, the Olympic Philosophy is at the centre of our focus.

“A major part of our strategy is to welcome to our city Olympians, who are the most important representatives of the Olympic philosophy, so we can benefit from their knowledge and experience. We are ready to prepare a great environment for the WOA through the World Olympians Forum to inspire our athletes, our youth and our entire community.”

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