Is it a case of deja vu?

Tuesday, 5th Feb 2013 marked a milestone in the history of ONOC, as representatives from the regional sporting organisation and the World Health Organisation (WHO) eventually came to the table to discuss possible partnerships, at the regional level. This was made possible following recent meetings between NCD Coordinator, Dr. Temo Waqanivalu and Margaret Eastgate who is currently writing a concept paper focussing again on addressing physical inactivity, as part of the Oceania Sport for Development Program - which has linkages to the birth of the Olympic Movement.  So, is it a case of deja vu? 

It is said that it was back in the late 1800s that de Coubertin [was] worried that youth in his native France were turning away from physical activity.  Today, we see the same problem in the gorwing rate of youth obesity through the world.  

As a result also of physical inactivity, across all age groups, the Pacific is facing a crisis - a Non-Communicable Disease crisis!

The alarming rise of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in the Pacific, the high morbidity rates associated with NCDs, besides the social, economic and environmental impact on already fast depleting national resources, the timing is apt to consolidate efforts and strengthen partnerships.  That is the intended outcome - to translate the global MOU signed between WHO and the IOC to the regional level.

During yesterday's consultations, ONOC and WHO shared information around the mechanics of each organization, it's members, partners and stakeholders; the scope of work cut out based on commonalities in mandates; the opportunities stemming from the diverse networks; funding sources and the mobilization of resources and the opprotunities available for joint activities.  A tangible outcome was the presentation and consultation of the draft MOU.  The intention is to formalize this partnership for presentation at the upcoming ONOC Executive Board Meeting and subsequently, the ONOC General Assembly in April 2013.

The WHO Team comprised Dr. Temo Waqanivalu, Dr. Colin Andrew Bell, Peter Hoejskov, Saula Volavola with the ONOC Team led by President, Dr. Robin Mitchell, Dennis Miller, Sainimili Talatoka and Margaret Eastgate.  The advice and contributions made during this consultative process is sincerely appreciated.


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