“Making a Substantial Contribution”
The World Games Family supports the people of Ukraine, with particular focus on the sports community in this war-torn country. IWGA President José Perurena has stated in a letter to Illia Shevliak, President of the Sports Committee of Ukraine (SCU): “Our deepest condolences for the losses your community has already incurred in this senseless war. Our hearts go out to you and the entire Ukrainian people, especially the sports community. We stand in admiration at the bravery that all your people are showing. Please be assured of our continuing support.”
In his letter, José Perurena described the first actions taken by The World Games Family: "The IWGA is making a substantial contribution to your Fund.” Illia Shevliak had asked for donations to the SCU: “Striving to be of some use, the Sports Committee of Ukraine, which unites more than 60 non-Olympic sports federations, has launched the ‘Team Ukraine Foundation’ to help those who are in need.”
José Perurena promised to encourage the 39 member federations of the IWGA also to donate to the Foundation. His letter to the presidents of the IFs, sent out on the same day, states: “We hope that all IWGA Member Federations will respond as generously as they can to Mr Shevliak's appeal, and we would please ask you to coordinate any action you decide to take with the IWGA Office, so that we are kept fully informed."
The IWGA President went on to explain that he intends to discuss the implications of Ukraine's situation at the meeting with the organisers of The World Games 2022 in Birmingham, USA next week. José Perurena gave the following example: "We are urging our colleagues on the Birmingham Organising Committee to do everything in their power to persuade the US State Department to facilitate visa issue to UKR participants in TWG 2022." 103 Ukrainian athletes have currently qualified in 63 of 223 disciplines for the Games, to be held from 7 to 17 July 2022 in Birmingham. “The IWGA will do everything possible to help Ukrainian athletes and officials to participate, despite all the difficulties they are facing,” says José Perurena.
One of the sad truths of the "senseless war" (José Perurena) was described by Illia Shevliak in his letter to the IWGA: "Let me also inform you, Mr. President, that a lot of Ukrainian sportsmen, including those who are qualified for The World Games 2022, are either taking up arms and defending their country or volunteering to help the Armed Forces and people in need. With grief and pain, we note that some of them have been murdered because of military operations or brutal bombing of the civil population."
The World Games is a multi-sport event staged every four years by the International World Games Association, organised with the support of the International Olympic Committee. The 11th edition of The World Games will be held in Birmingham, Alabama, USA, 7-17 July 2022. 3,600 athletes from 34 sports and over 100 countries will take part in The World Games.