Message from EOC President Spyros Capralos
Over the past month we have reached a number of important milestones for European sport, which come at a time of great importance for the Olympic Movement in our continent. Indeed, it is a time when sport has the responsibility to promote peace and unity, and we are all aware of the role we have to play.
The EOC continues to prioritise supporting our dear friends in Ukraine, with the ongoing war something that must remain at the forefront of all our minds. Sport is certainly playing its part by taking a firm stance against the actions of Russia and Belarus, and most importantly finding ways to help those desperately in need. Your efforts are making a real difference and they are greatly appreciated by everyone in the European sports family.
The most powerful messages of peace and unity are those displayed by our athletes. Europe’s sporting heroes have the platform to reach millions of people around the world, and in coming together on the field of play they showcase that we are united as a continent.
For that reason, I am delighted that we signed the Host City Region Contract for the European Games 2023 in Poland, setting the blueprint for the future of Europe’s premier multisport event. As I said at the time, Poland is a natural fit to host this event due its peoples’ embodiment of the values the EOC and the European Games promote. The way the country has welcomed and supported millions of Ukrainian refugees is the epitome of solidarity, and the Games will show the world sport has brought us together.
It is also critical that this message reaches the next generation of athletes and fans, which is why the Flame of Peace Ceremony for the 16th Summer European Youth Olympic Festival (EYOF) Banská Bystrica 2022 took on even greater importance this month. With just over 50 days to go until the EYOF, the Ara Pacis Augustae in Rome played host to this special celebration and the torch is now on its journey through Slovakia. As the EYOF approaches, we must all act on our duty to help shape how society develops in the future and work in unison to ensure the message of peace through sport is at the heart of the event in July.
Prior to this, in June, the EOC family will gather in Skopje for our annual General Assembly. This comes a year into my Presidency and I can look back with pride at what we have achieved together, despite the challenges that we faced along the way.
I look forward to seeing you in North Macedonia, where we will celebrate the central role sport plays in society. Thank you for your hard work and dedication to the European Olympic Movement – keep up the great work!
Best EurOlympic greetings,