Covid-19: World Athletics Creates Fund to Support Athletes in Difficulty, on Proposal of Former Moroccan Athlete El Guerrouj

Paris – World Athletics (WA) launched on Tuesday, on the proposal of former Moroccan athlete Hicham El Guerrouj, a US$500,000 fund to support professional athletes facing financial difficulties due to the pandemic of the novel coronavirus.

Launched in partnership with the International Athletics Foundation (IAF), the fund intends to help athletes who have lost most of their income in recent months due to the suspension of international competitions to combat the spread of Covid-19, said WA and IAF president Sebastian Coe, who welcomed Hicham El Guerrouj’s proposal to support athletes in these difficult times.

 In addition to Hicham El Guerrouj, Olympic champion and 1,500m world record holder, the multi-regional working group of experts will include Katerina Stefanidi, Olympic pole-vaulting champion (representing the WA Athletes’ Commission), Sunil Sabharwal (Audit Committee) and Abby Hoffman, members of the Executive Board of WA.

 In a statement to MAP, El Guerrouj said his proposal to create a fund to support athletes affected by the pandemic of the new coronavirus is an “initiative of solidarity with the world family of athletics”.

 The Moroccan Olympic champion stressed that the idea of creating this fund came as a result of the exceptional and difficult situation that the world is going through due to the spread of Covid-19 which has hit all sports disciplines hard.

The world is now waging a bitter war against this epidemic, which has had economic and social repercussions, particularly on athletes, El Guerrouj said, adding that it was necessary to launch a humanitarian and solidarity initiative in favor of these sportsmen and women.

Source: Agency Morocaine De Presse

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