Sport as the inspiration of society
Heroes and legends as role models
"Sports for Peace" creates an important platform on which athletes can join to promote the essential values of sports - fair play, tolerance and peace. In creating "Sports for Peace" we hope to further the spirit of sportsmanship, the sense of community and the elimination of prejudice.
We aim to spread messages for peace through sports and symbolic gestures of sportswomen and sportsmen, such as the following:
Nino Salukvadze from Georgia and her Russian friend Natalia Paderina competed in the women's 10-meter air pistol competition of the 2008 Summer Olympics when their nations Georgia and Russia were at war. After Salukvadze won the bronze and Paderina the silver medal, they shared a kiss on the podium and called on the two governments to end the war. "If the world were to draw any lessons from what we did, there would never be any wars." said Salukvadze afterwards - a statement right according to the aims and mission of "Sports for Peace".
In the round of the least 16 at the Championships in Shanghai in 2005 German table tennis star Timo Boll corrected the referee and returned a point, the match ball. Afterwards he lost the match but by this sporting gesture he became a sport idol in China.
Timo Boll – a fair sportsman and hero in China
Nino Salukvadze and her Russian friend Natalia Paderina
South African Rugby player hearing the final whistle
Tommie Smith (center) and John Carlos (right) raising their gloved fists
During the Olympics in Mexico 1968 Tommie Smith and John Carlos raised their gloved fists and bowed their heads during the medal ceremony in protest against racism in US. The protest met with outrage and both men were suspended from the national team and banned from the Olympic village. But it was a milestone in America's civil rights movement and both athletes were honoured in 1998 on the 30th anniversary of their protest.
The 1995 Rugby World Cup was hosted and won by South Africa and the first major sporting event to take place in South Africa following the end of apartheid. It was also the first in which the South African national team was allowed to compete; the International Rugby Football Board had only allowed the re-admittance of South Africa to international rugby in 1992, following negotiations to end apartheid. What happened after the match would go on to become an iconic moment in the history of the sport. Nelson Mandela, wearing a Springbok Rugby shirt and baseball cap, presented the Cup to South African captain François Pienaar to the delight of the capacity crowd. The moment is thought by some to be one of the most famous finals of any sport.
Outstanding personalities like Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who was chairman of the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission from 1996 to 1998, recognizes the value of sports for peacemaking when, referring to the Rugby World Cup Final in 1995, he said "When South Africa won the Rugby World Cup it changed our whole country. It did more for our country's reconciliation than all my sermons for a year."