Alexander Zhukov: ‘We are ready to support initiatives emanating from the regions and the sports federations’

At the end of the extended meeting of the ROC Sport for All Commission, held in Vladimir, Alexander Zhukov, President of the Russian Olympic Committee,  told about the importance of the held event and answered reporters’ questions

– We can see that in the Vladimir Region involving people in sport proceeds at a great pace. Today’s meeting was very useful for the representatives of the regions in terms of exchange of experience on public sport development in our country. And the Russian Olympic Committee tried to tell about its sports programs.

– What do we need to create sports clubs in the regions?

– Sports clubs appear ‘from below’, people are willing and able to organize themselves. What is necessary is the appropriate sports infrastructure and local support. We are ready to support initiatives that come from the regions and the sports federations. A lot of such projects have already been implemented.

– Different regions have different sports infrastructure. Will it be taken into account when selecting the best projects of regional Olympic Councils?

– Russian Olympic Committee projects in the framework of the Olympic Country program are primarily aimed at holding various public events to promote sport for all residents of the country, regardless of their age and social status. The funds that we provide have nothing to do with construction of major sports facilities. This is not our goal. We consider support for the initiative ‘from below’.

For example, to promote wrestling at schools we can buy wrestling mats for children; or to promote table tennis at schools purchase table tennis bats, balls tables and nets. Sports infrastructure should certainly be built in all the regions. Support will be provided at the expense of the federal budget. But in order to give more opportunities to practise sports in all regions we should to make joint efforts.

– What else do you think, helps encourage the young people to engage into physical culture and sport?

– For example we are very pleased that in Vladimir an idea arose to install a monument to a seven-time Olympic champion in Artistic Gymnastics Nikolai Andrianov and we are very pleased to contribute modestly to the construction of this monument.

We hope that Vladimir’s sporting traditions will be continued and we hope that among new Olympic champions there will be representatives of this region!