IAAF president Lamine Diack at the IAAF Kids Athletics programme in Monaco to mark the first ever International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (Philippe Fitte) © Copyright
News Monaco

Peace and Sport joins forces with the IAAF to celebrate the first International Day of Sport for Development and Peace

Longstanding partners in the field of sport and peace, ‘Peace and Sport, L’Organisation pour la Paix par le Sport’ and the IAAF have once again pooled their knowledge and shared values to organise a peace relay at the Stade Louis II in Monaco on Friday 4 April 2014.

To celebrate the first ever International Day of Sport for Development and Peace, created by the UN, 121 pupils from various primary schools in Monaco will join 29 first-year students from the Lycée Albert 1er to take part in:

– 400m/800m races, long jump and pole vault events

– an introduction to the Kids’ Athletics Programme

Providing encouragement will be IAAF President Lamine Diack, who will start the first race. Paula Radcliffe, marathon world record-holder and a Peace and Sport Champion for Peace, will also be in attendance to support the children in their efforts.

The young runners will also contribute to the ‘White Card – Sporting Gesture for Peace’ movement, performing a simple and highly symbolic action that highlights the efforts of those involved in encouraging development and peace through sport. It has already proved extremely successful, having gone viral on Facebook, with hundreds of people around the world getting involved.

By channelling their energies into using sport to bring about peace, the children will be part of an international event that extends across sports and brings together a wide range of communities.

To take part in the Carton Blanc campaign:

– Take a photo of you (or your group) holding a white card like an umpire or a referee on a playing field. Be creative!

– Post the photo on the April6 Facebook page (tagging yourself if you want it to appear on your profile) with the comment: ‘Play your Peace on @April6!’

– Spread the word among all your friends so that they can get involved in the campaign too.

For more information about the Carton Blanc campaign or to see Maud Bernos’ exhibition, click here.

“As the managing body of international athletics, the IAAF is also responsible for harnessing the potential and widespread appeal of athletics to send a different message around the world,” said Diack.

“It has been my heartfelt desire that a sports event could be held at our home in Monaco to symbolically mark the birth of the first International Day of Sport for Development and Peace. I am delighted that athletics will enable pupils from local schools to enjoy themselves and hope that they will take in the message being communicated. Our great champion Paula Radcliffe, official representatives of the government of Monaco, our friends from the Monaco Athletics Federation and, of course, Peace and Sport, will all be in attendance to support this initiative.

“I sincerely hope that all our federations, as well as all the members of the wider athletics community, will be inspired by our actions and that 6 April will be celebrated around the world with the respect it deserves.”

“It is a special honour for us to work with the IAAF, one of the world’s biggest sports federations, to celebrate the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace,” added Joel Bouzou, president and founder of Peace and Sport.

“I would like to encourage everyone involved in the sports movement to take part in this international initiative to make 6 April a clear symbol of the movement for peace and development through sport.”