The 4th FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy International Forum was held at the Innopolis University on 4-7 September.
Due to the global sanitary-and-epidemiologic situation the event had to be switched to the online format. However, this change of format allowed for more speakers and made it possible to increase the number of participants compared to previous years. The forum was attended by 237 representatives of volunteer organisations from 116 countries.
“The FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy is actually heritage of the work done during preparation for the 2013 Summer Universiade, 2015 FINA World Championships, as well as the Confederations Cup and FIFA World Cup matches. And while in previous years we welcomed activists and leaders of volunteer movements from 25-30 countries, today we see 10-fold more representatives (237) almost from every country of the world (116) on the platform of our trusted partner, FISU,” President of the Republic of Tatarstan, Rustam Minnikhanov, said in his welcome address to the participants of the forum.
The three-day education programme of the academy included lectures, master classes, group project work, and discussions. Key speakers of the forum were FISU experts, staff of organizing committees of future Universiades and world unversity championships, and representatives of international sports organizations.
The project of the FINA Development Centre, which is currently implemented by the Directorate for Sports and Social Projects together with Tatarstan's Ministry of Sport and International Swimming Federation (FINA), was presented on the sidelines of the forum. The project was presented by CEO of Kazan's FINA Development Centre and Director General of the Directorate, Ranko Tepavceviс. The forum participants asked questions about the scholarships programme, practical training during events hosted by the Directorate and internships for young coaches as part of the centre's educational programme.
Traditionally, after training the participants were awarded the status of FISU Student Ambassadors, so they could start promoting university sports in their countries.
FISU leadership decided that the participants of the academy’s 2020 education programme will take part in the forum in 2021 and have an opportunity to travel to Kazan.
FISU Student Ambassadors’ main objective will be providing organizational and volunteer assistance to National University Sports Federations of 116 countries in preparation and hosting of
events and competitions in 2020-2021 (according to the Action Plan that will be collectively developed in the framework of the academy).
The academy’s 2020 education programme was fully dedicated to the results of implementing the FISU Student Ambassador programme in 2019-2020 and development of the common Action Plan for the coming two years.
The FISU Volunteer Leaders Academy, hereinafter referred to as the academy, is a one-of-a-kind project initiated by the volunteer community at the 13th FISU Forum
in Montpellier and implemented with the support of FISU President, Oleg Matytsin.
The founders of the academy are the International University Sports Federation (FISU) and the Government of the Republic of Tatarstan, represented by the Ministry of Sports of the Republic of Tatarstan, with the assistance of the Directorate for Sports and Social Projects. Nornickel was an official partner of the project in 2017-2020.
It is noteworthy that the forum’s organizing committee in Kazan is staffed with the 2013 Summer Universiade volunteers, who have gained further experience of organizational work while being part of the Directorate’s team on large international sports projects.
The goal of the academy is to create a standing international platform for communication among leaders of national university sports federations’ volunteer movements, and exchange of opinions and best practices of implementing volunteer programmes for hosting large international sports events, including those for students.
For three years the participants have worked with representatives of the International Olympic Committee, national university sports federations, and World Anti-Doping Agency, team leaders of EF Education First, the Organizing Committee of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, and 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Local Organising Committee, Olympic champions and famous international athletes.
In 2017, the project was highly appraised at the meeting of the FISU General Assembly, where the academy was given the status of an annual event.
In 2018, the academy was held on the days of the FIFA World Cup and presented the participants with a unique opportunity to experience the festive atmosphere of the main sports event on the planet. The participants attended one of the matches at the Kazan Arena stadium, saw the fan fest and worked one shift as city volunteers.
In 2019, the academy’s educational programme was dedicated to preparation for the 2020 World University Championships and celebrating of International Day of University Sport.
Press Office of Directorate for Sports and Social Projects