Sports for Hope – Zambia Pilot Project – IOC
The Sports for Hope project is an IOC initiated program which aims to build a multi-purpose Olympic Sports and Educational Centre in Lusaka, Zambia financed by several partners. The Zambian government has donated the land to the Zambian National Olympic Committee (NOC). The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is responsible for building the overall facilities and the International Federations involved in the project provide expertise and finance the building for their own specific sport infrastructures.
The project comprises several outdoor sports areas, a multipurpose hall for indoor sports and a hostel. The Training Centre consists of an athletics field, football field, hockey field, Olympic pool and three multi-sport fields for tennis, basketball, boxing, handball, weightlifting and other sports. The multipurpose hall and the plaza will also be used for social activities.
Why Zambia- Lusaka?
Zambia has been chosen to host this pilot project of the IOC because it is the future host of the All African Games 2021 (AAG).
Lusaka is a typical African metropolis with sprawling settlements. Since people living in those areas are poor and may not afford to pay rates, service delivery is therefore dependent on central and local government funding. Younger people and women constitute the majority of the population.
Lusaka enjoys basic infrastructure such as schools. However, such is the over-crowding that thousands of children do not attend school or are unable to move to higher education. The area in which the Training Centre is located consists of four massive urban and peri-urban settlements and would be a major contributor to sports development in the country and in the region.
Aim of the “Sports for Hope” Project
The purpose of the project is to provide young people and communities in Zambia with the opportunities to practice sport and be educated in the values of Olympism.
This project also aims to contribute to the quality of life of the community while at the same time providing high class facilities for sports development and competition as well as in the broad context of “sport for all”.
Hockey Pitch for Zambia – FIH Project
Sports for Hope is one of the IOC’s most prestigious projects. Through this initiative more focus and attention will be drawn also to hockey which will increase the awareness of this sport in the region and boost the recruitment of young players.
The role of the FIH is the financial backing of the project as well as the technical installation of a hockey pitch. This Centre will serve to implement a long term hockey development program in this area. This Centre will serve to implement a long term hockey development program in this area and Zambian Hockey Association (ZHA) will be responsibility for the hockey pitch.
The Centre will serve as a regional/international training and competition venue as well as the venue for the next (2021) All African Games (AAG). It is crucial to ensure that hockey is part of the AAG programme as the AAG hockey competitions for men and women will serve as the qualification events for the 2020 Olympics and this is often the only way to obtain governmental support for the hockey team.
Aim of “Hockey Pitch for Zambia” project
Although hockey was offered as part of the sports programme at certain international schools in the nineties in Zambia, there were no formal linkages between the Zambian Hockey Association (ZHA) and the schools programme. At that time many factors contributed to the demise of hockey and the ZHA virtually ceased to function.
The ZHA was reconstituted in 2004 (currently only operational on the North region, Copperbelt) and a plan has been developed to re-establish hockey in the schools and the local community. The development plan focuses on schools and institutions of higher learning and sets targets for the development of youngsters, national teams (U16,U18,U21) and for the implementation of education and accreditation schemes for umpires and coaches.
This project is also a social development project where the aim is to provide young people and communities in Zambia with opportunities to practice hockey and be educated in the values of fair play, sportsmanship, and drug free sport. This project also intends to develop community spirit and participation in sport through hockey.
Much of the current hockey activities take place on the Copperbelt (north/north west) and there are limited activities in the midlands (Lusaka) and the south. The playing conditions are very poor and there is a shortage of playing fields and hockey equipment and schools are under resourced. In order to re-establish and develop hockey, the ZHA needs to extend its programme to the Midlands. Through the construction of the hockey field in the Sport Centre and a proper development plan, hockey standards will improve and participation will extend throughout the country. This project will serve as a springboard for accelerated growth and hockey development in Zambia.
The hockey pitch installed in Lusaka will be having a synthetic turf surface. This type of surface ensures good playing conditions over a considerable lifecycle. It is also suitable for all ages and skill levels because it provides a smooth, flat and safe playing field.